Friday, 29 March 2019

Busting Vaccine Myths

Ooooooh boy. I have no idea what kind of rabbit hole I'm entering here, and this may end up being the 1) longest, 2) least read, and 3) most unworthwhile (yes, it's a word) post in the history of blogs. But fuck it, I'm doing it anyway.

If you've landed on this page, one of three things has happened:
  1. You've been a loyal reader, got an email notification about this post, and you clicked it. 
  2. You searched the internet for "docbastard vaccines" for some stupid reason, or 
  3. I or (hopefully) someone else referred you here from Twitter because you made some bullshit argument about vaccines. 
If it's #3, there is at least a 99.21% chance (I calculated it) that you haven't even read this far. But in case you have, please immediately refer to the number I listed so you can quickly find out why you're wrong here wrong.

If that last sentence doesn't make sense, just read on. Everyone else knows it will all come together by the end. 

My Twitter life has devolved into arguing about pseudoscience, and that has devolved even further into mainly arguing about vaccines. I have officially gotten sick and fucking tired of answering the same stupid points repeatedly, so I have decided to make this handy dandy little (not-so-little) compendium of Answers To Stupid Antivax Talking Points. These are the same tired old arguments I have heard over and over and fucking over again, and that I have refuted over and over and fucking over again. So instead of repeating myself, I can just point people here and thus assure myself that no one will ever read this ever in the future history of ever.

Image result for that's just your opinion man
If you're expecting any of the answers to be just "NO", then prepare to be sorely disappointed, because what I will not do is simply say "NO". What I will do is say "NO" and explain why it's NO while citing sources, so you can't just say "WELL THAT'S JUST YOUR OPINION". Let me stress here that almost nothing here is "just my opinion".

I'm going to place a handy little (and now-alphabetised) table right about here with all the arguments I'll be assassinating discussing for easy reference.

100% effective 100% safe 72 doses Aborted foetus Allergies Aluminum
Antivax doctors Autism Autoimmune Bill Gates Bloodstream Cancer virus
Cause cancer CDC Compulsory Contamination Cutter Didn't exist
Didn't save us Flu sheds Flu shot Flu shot causes flu Formaldehyde Gardasil
Gay GBS Genetic drift Harmless Hep B Herd immunity
Insert Low prevalence Measles doesn't exist Mercury MMR kills MMS
Money MTHFR My choice Natural immunity Never flu No measles deaths
Not antivax but Only MMR Peanut oil Pertussis POF Poling
Polio DDT Polio renamed Polysorbate 80 Protects cancer Religion Safer vaccines
Safety study Sanitation Schedule Seizures Shedding SIDS
Simpsonwood Squalene Survivorship Too many too soon Toxins Unavoidably unsafe
Underreported Unvax healthier Vaccine court VAERS Vax vs unvax Vaxed outbreaks
Wakefield Waning immunity Why unvax threat Zimmerman

And with that out of the way, let's get started. 

1) If you want to pump your kid full of massive amounts of toxins . . .
Stop right there. This is almost universally the first argument I see, almost like it's the antivaxxer fight song. This is what antivaxxers seem to think vaccines look like:

See the terrified crying child? The big syringes full of a large amount of scary yellow stuff that looks like apple juice? Multiple injections at one time? I could call this a lot of things - fear mongering, scare tactics, hyperbole. But a far more accurate term would be BULLSHIT. Here is what an actual vaccine injection looks like:

Calm baby, tiny needle (which you can't even see because it's so small), tiny amount of clear fluid. The actual volume of a vaccine is 0.5 ml. That's 10 drops. TEN FUCKING DROPS. So don't talk about pumping massive amounts of anything. There is no pumping, no massive, and no toxins.

2). . . toxins like mercury
Sigh . . . "toxins". There is no elemental mercury in any vaccine, nor has there ever been. What you are referring to is thimerosal, which is approximately 50% ethylmercury. And while the word "ethylmercury" has the word "mercury" in it, that does not make it either mercury or poison. Think of it this way: the word "chair" has "hair" in it. That doesn't mean it's made of hair.

Ok, that is admittedly a terrible analogy. How about this: sodium is a metal which explodes when exposed to water, and chloride gas is highly poisonous. But when you (well, not you exactly) combine the two into a compound, it produces ordinary table salt (which can still be toxic, but that's a subject for another time). This is basic chemistry. Basic. Heh. Yes, that was a chemistry joke.

Anyway, ethylmercury is not the mercury found in thermometers. It is also not the dangerous mercury compound found in fish. That would be methylmercury, and though it is only one letter different than ethylmercury, it is an entirely different compound with entirely different metabolism and effect on human physiology (just like ethanol, which is the alcohol found in your wine, and methanol, which will kill you if you drink it). Studies have found that ethylmercury is readily metabolised and excreted so does not increase blood mercury levels, while methymercury lingers for much longer and is much more toxic.

This all ignores the fact that ethylmercury was removed from all childhood vaccines in 2001. I will address this point further later.

3) . . . and aluminum . . .
Aluminum salts have been used as adjuvants in vaccines for decades. Adjuvants increase the immune response, increasing the chance that a vaccine will grant immunity. The exact mechanism by which it does this is still not clear, but what is clear is that aluminum salts have been extensively studied and found to be safe. This is an excellent review article which documents the excellent safety profile and the minimal risks (including macrophagic myofasciitis) of using aluminum salt adjuvants. Yes, they have risks. But they are very small.

4) . . . and polysorbate 80 . . .
Polysorbate 80 is a surfactant and emulsifier used in innumerable foods, cosmetics, eye drops, mouth wash, etc. It is also used in some vaccines as a stabiliser, but in such tiny amounts as to be negligible to human physiology.

Let's do a comparison, shall we? The HPV vaccine contains 50 microgram of polysorbate 80, while a small scoop of ice cream contains about 170,000 micrograms, or 3400 times as much polysorbate 80. (reference) It has also been studied in infants given vaccines with and without polysorbate 80, and it has been found to be safe.

5) . . . aborted foetal tissue . . .
This one usually makes me laugh. Antivaxxers make it sound like aborted babies are ground up and placed in a vaccine vial along with other assorted toxins. But no babies are aborted to manufacture vaccines. A few vaccines are grown on cell lines derived from a foetus that was aborted years ago, because viruses grow better on the type of cells that they normally infect. The vaccine is then washed, eliminating all but a trace of the growth medium. So no, there are no dead babies in any vaccine, and no new babies are aborted to make vaccines.

6) . . . formaldehyde . . .
If you have used this stupid argument, then you have displayed your ignorance of human physiology. Formaldehyde sounds scary - "THAT'S WHAT THEY PRESERVE CORPSES WITH!" - but it is actually a very normal part of human metabolism. As you sit there steaming at me, your cells are creating way more formaldehyde than could be found in any vaccine. In fact, in the 30 or so seconds it took you to read this paragraph thus far, your liver has metabolised about 11 mg of formaldehyde, which is over 10 times as much as an infant could ever receive from even multiple vaccines (0.7 mg). In the time it took you to read that last sentence, an infant would have already metabolised all the formaldehyde from their vaccines twice. If your infant read that last sentence, however, then Mensa would probably like to have a word with you. And her.

7) . . . cancer virus.
Oh, you made the SV40 argument. Yes, many thousands of people unknowingly received a polio vaccine that was tainted (or contaminated, if you'd prefer) with SV40. And that is truly unfortunate. However, SV40 was not discovered until 1960, whereas the polio vaccine was first produced in 1955. It was simply not known. But once it was discovered, it was removed from the polio vaccine (obviously). Still, by the time it was removed in 1963 about 90% of children had received a polio vaccine contaminated with the virus, which causes tumours in animals. Of course the fear was that it would cause cancer in humans, and it is true that SV40 has been found in various human cancer cells. However, it has been extensively studied, and while the virus has been found in human cancers, a review of the evidence has shown that SV40 does not cause cancer in humans. It has been studied for over 50 years, and no association has been found. It also hasn't been in any vaccine since 1963, so there is no cancer in any vaccine.

8) Vaccines cause autism!
I knew you would get here. The short version is "NO THEY FUCKING DON'T", but that won't satisfy you. Actually, nothing will satisfy you but I'm going to continue anyway. Vaccines have been studied extensively for their possible role in causing autism. There are exactly ZERO large studies that show any association between vaccines and autism, and while I'm thinking about it there are exactly ZERO small studies which show it. Wakefield's original 1998 bullshit fraud was only 12 patients, if you didn't know.

On the other hand, there are multiple studies of tens or hundreds of thousands of children from various countries around the planet (so you can shove your "But the CDC is corrupt!" conspiracy theory up your ass), each of which show no association between vaccines and autism. Here are a few of them:
1) Danish study of MMR and 537,000 children - no link
2) Finnish study of MMR and 535,000 children - no link
3) US study of MMR and 95,000 children - no link
4) UK study of thimerosal and DPT/DT and 109,000 children - no link
5) Danish study of thimerosal-containing vaccines and 467,000 children - no link
6) US study of thimerosal-containing vaccines and 124,000 children - no link
7) Danish study of MMR and 657,000 children (including high risk children) - no link

That last one was just published March 4, 2019 and represents probably the largest, most comprehensive study which shows absolutely no link between MMR and autism. They even looked at children who had siblings with autism and other risk factors that would make them high risk for autism, but they still found no link. The conclusion speaks for itself (emphasis mine):
Conclusion: The study strongly supports that MMR vaccination does not increase the risk for autism, does not trigger autism in susceptible children, and is not associated with clustering of autism cases after vaccination. It adds to previous studies through significant additional statistical power and by addressing hypotheses of susceptible subgroups and clustering of cases.
Oh . . . I suppose I accidentally emphasised the entire conclusion completely on purpose. That's because it should be fucking obvious by now. That's 7 huge studies and over 2.5 million children vs your anecdote or Wakefield's bullshit. So stop already.

Just fucking stop.

9) But only MMR has been studied!
I will refer you back to response 8 above. You can clearly see three studies (4, 5, and 6) which looked at children who received thimerosal-containing vaccines. Antivaxxers seem to think that every vaccine ever produced has several tonnes of thimerosal in it, but in reality MMR never contained thimerosal. Not "but trace amounts", not "but it was removed" - never. NONE. So yes, other vaccines have most definitely been studied, and they all show the same thing - that those other vaccines also do not cause autism.

10) But MTHFR!
I've asked every antivaxxer who has mentioned this to tell me in their own words what MTHFR is and how it relates to vaccination without looking it up, but not a single person has other than to call it a mutation. Strange. MTHFR stands for methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase. It is a gene on chromosome 1 which encodes an enzyme that catalyses 5,10-methylenetetrahydrofolate to 5-methyltetrahydrofolate (which has to do with homocystine metabolism and is some pretty goddamned fancy science). There are many polymorphisms (ie variations) of the genes, and some are incredibly common (for example, 10% of the North American population has 2 copies of a specific polymorphism). Preliminary research shows it may increase the risk of schizophrenia or dementia, but no research shows the gene has anything to do with any vaccine side effect. MTHFR is a polymorphism, not a mutation. Those two words are not synonymous.

I know you think citing MTHFR makes you look smart, but it has the exact opposite effect. If you didn't understand the above paragraph but still think MTHFR is a mutation which causes autism, it isn't and it doesn't.

11) But Hannah Poling!
Hannah Poling had a very rare mitochondrial disorder, so rare that its exact incidence is unknown. She received her normal series of vaccines at 19 months old (DTaP, MMR, HiB, varicella, polio), and two days later was lethargic with a rash. She was diagnosed with vaccine-derived varicella, and several months later continued to have delays in her neurological development. Ultimately she was diagnosed with encephalopathy, followed by language, behaviour, and communication problems. Though mitochondrial disorders can appear quite similar to autism, her parents (including her father, who is a neurologist) took her case to the Vaccine Court and won.
HA! SLAM DUNK! VACCINES CAUSE AUTISM! RIGHT?
Well, no. Dr. Paul Offit has reviewed this case in very specific detail here, but I'll give a short summary nevertheless since I can't expect anyone to click on a link and read something: Infections are known to exacerbate encephalopathy but vaccines are not. And children with mitochondrial disorders are at a higher risk of infections, which can exacerbate encephalopathy (didn't I just say that)?

So did vaccines cause Hannah's autism? No.

12) But Dr. Andrew Zimmerman said vaccines cause autism!
This is a rather recent antivax talking point. Andrew Zimmerman is a paediatric neurologist who co-authored a case report in 2006 which documented a child with a mitochondrial disorder who developed autism after being vaccinated (sound familiar?). While this is being translated by antivaxxers as "SEE? VACCINES CAN CAUSE AUTISM!", these people are merely cherry picking and completely missed Dr. Zimmerman's full statement: "There may be a subset of children who are at risk of regression if they have underlying mitochondrial dysfunction and are simultaneously exposed to factors that stress their mitochrondrial reserve (which is critical for developing the brain). Such factors might include infections, as well as metabolic and immune factors, and vaccines".

In other words, children with these extremely rare disorders may be predisposed to developing autism or autism-like symptoms if they are exposed to some environmental trigger. Vaccines may be one of them, but there are many others as well. Keep in mind that children are exposed to thousands of antigens every single day of their lives. Unless they are kept in a sterile bubble, the risk with these children is way higher with infectious diseases compared to vaccines.

13) Dr. Wakefield was exonerated!
First of all, it's Mister Wakefield. He lost his licence to practice medicine and thus should not be called "Doctor". Second, no he wasn't. Charges against one of his co-authors, who has stated both his continued support of MMR and that their paper did not establish any link between MMR and autism, were dropped on appeal. Mr. Wakefield, on the other hand, lost his license due to his elaborately fraudulent paper which involved paying children at his kid's birthday party £5 for blood samples, without permission from an ethics committee. Oh what's the matter, you didn't know that little detail? Shame. I suspect you also didn't know that Wakefield was trying to patent his own single measles vaccine by tarnishing MMR. What, you didn't know that either? Well now you do. Your hero is an unethical asshole.

Wakefield was not exonerated. He never won any appeal and he did not get his licence back. He now spends his time in the US making bullshit antivax movies and talking antivax bullshit to impressionable immigrants and causing outbreaks of measles. In short, Andrew Wakefield is an asshole and a menace to society.

14) CDC whistleblower!
Speaking of elaborate, this one is merely an elaborate conspiracy. It involves a team of CDC researchers, including William Thompson, supposedly throwing data in the garbage can (literally) which purportedly showed that black children were more than three times more likely to develop autism as a result of vaccines. This was supposedly found after a non-scientist named Brian Hooker re-evaluated the data.

Well there are a few problems with this: first, who keeps paper data anymore? Data is all digital and backed up repeatedly in multiple locations. If they didn't then they are shoddy researchers who should not be trusted with anything. Anyway, I literally laughed out loud when I read the part about throwing data in the bin. Second, William Thompson is still employed by CDC. Anyone ever heard of a whistleblower still being employed by the company (or agency) against whom they blew a whistle? Third, the re-evaluation by Hooker was completely incorrectly done, using the wrong statistical analysis to evaluate the data. And fourth, even if the re-evaluation were true (it isn't - read here), it only shows an increase in risk in one demographic (black males). It did not show any increased risk in white boys or girls. This would mean that vaccines STILL do not cause autism in every other demographic.


15) Why is my unvaccinated kid such a threat to your vaccinated kid if vaccines work?
This argument is so stupid that I'm surprised anyone still uses it. First, no vaccine is 100% effective. The closest is measles, which is 97% effective after two doses. Second, not all children can be vaccinated. Third, some children are too young to be vaccinated. Are you telling me that you don't give a fuck about an infant suffering from a disease she's too young to be vaccinated against? What kind of monster are you? Actually I'll just let this handy graphic explain the rest:
Image result for why is my unvaccinated kid risk

16) These are all just harmless childhood diseases.
What kind of "harmless disease" continues to kill over 100,000 children every year? There has only been one year on record that measles has killed fewer than 100,000 children (2016). Does this still sound harmless? Between 2000 and 2017, global measles vaccination increased from 72 to 85%, while during the same period measles rates decreased 83% and measles deaths fell 80%. Let me repeat - measles deaths fell 80%. And before you even say "But not in my country!", well fuck you. Fuck you for not caring about children dying in other countries just because they don't live near you and look like you. Fuck you.

Regardless, that's just for measles (which seems to have become the poster child for "harmless" vaccine preventable diseases), because this stupid argument also completely ignores all the other various deadly and/or debilitating diseases for which vaccines exist (hepatitis B, Haemophilus influenza, meningitis, polio, etc). Even chicken pox. Yes, chicken pox, which used to kill about hundred kids in the United States alone each year before the vaccine. Is 100 dead children enough for you? And after the vaccine was introduced, this happened:
Image result for chicken pox mortality rate
Is that clear to you yet? And I swear to fucking god, if you try to say "But the Brady Bunch . . ." I will somehow find you and slap the shit out of you. The Brady Bunch was a fucking sitcom, produced to make people laugh. It was not a documentary on the supposed (but nonexistent) benign nature of infectious diseases. Did you expect them to show the graveyards of children killed by disease? I don't think the ratings would have been very high if they showed this:
which shows two young cousins age 4 and 7 who died within 2 days of each other from diphtheria. Which is preventable with a vaccine.

Or this:
which shows two brothers and a sister, ages 7, 10, and 11, who all died within about two weeks of each other of diphtheria. Which is preventable with a fucking vaccine.

There are graveyards filled with the corpses of children who died of vaccine-preventable diseases. So fuck you for not caring about them.

17) But there are too many vaccines on the schedule. 72 doses!
You probably sent this graphic or a similar one:
This is supposed to scare people into thinking "HOLY HELL! LOOK AT ALL THOSE SHOTS!" But look closer - in 1960, there were only three shots which prevented 5 diseases (polio, smallpox, diphtheria, pertussis, and tetanus). By 1983 this had been expanded to include 3 more diseases (measles, mumps, and rubella), and studies had shown that efficacy was much better for several vaccines when boosters were given. By 2016 we were now able to protect children from flu, rotavirus, chicken pox, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, haemophilus influenza, pneumococcus, and meningitis. And you think this is a bad thing? Preventing debilitating and/or deadly diseases is somehow wrong to you? Yes we give children many more shots now, but only because we don't want them to suffer or die the way so many others did.

I had chicken pox as a child because there was no vaccine for it at the time. I remember it vividly because it was unquestionably the worst week of my life. I wouldn't wish chicken pox on my worst enemy (not even you, antivaxxer), so it's fortunate we now have a vaccine for it.

How much do you have to hate children to want them to suffer from these diseases? I watched my sister almost die from H flu meningitis when she was a toddler (also no vaccine at the time). She survived and recovered fully, but the kid in the adjacent room was not so lucky. He's in the fucking ground now, from a disease we can prevent.

18) Well then there are too many vaccines too soon.
Are there? According to whom, you? There is no evidence to support such a statement. You have been led to believe that children's immune systems are not developed enough to be able to handle the antigens in a vaccine, but somehow you believe they can handle all the other thousands or millions of antigens they deal with every day? Have you ever seen a baby? You know infants put everything right in their mouths, right? That teething ring your little angel just put back in her mouth was sitting on the floor that you walk on. Did you sterilise your shoes this morning? Did you even realise you stepped in dog shit? No? Well your child's immune system can handle that, so it can handle a few antigens in a few vaccines, even at the same time.

Oh and before you claim that I don't have any evidence, yes I do. Here it is. Enjoy: On-time vaccine receipt in the first year does not adversely affect neuropsychological outcomes.

19) But the vaccine schedule has never been tested.
Yes it has. The fact that you don't know it has is your failing, not anyone else's. Here is one such piece of evidence. And here is a study of macaques who were given the full infant vaccine schedule and observed for 5 years (keep in mind that autism generally manifests around 2 years old), and there were no neurodevelopmental problems. The best part of this study was that it was funded by antivaxxers who were expecting to find problems, but they didn't. This study proved them, and you, wrong.

20) But the vaccine court has paid out billions. This proves vaccine injury is real and vaccines are dangerous.
No, it proves that vaccines are not 100% safe, which is fully acknowledged by anyone who knows anything about vaccines. The only people who say anything about vaccines being 100% safe or 100% effective are antivaxxers, but always in the context of "But pro-vaxxers say vaccines are 100% safe and effective!" which is not remotely true. We do not say that. You say that. (More on that later)

Regardless, let's actually look at the numbers from the vaccine court, shall we? According to the latest statistics (July, 2018) between 2006 and 2016 a total of 3,153,876,236 doses of vaccines were distributed in the US. Over that same time period, there were 3727 compensable claims in the vaccine court amounting to $1.74 billion (the $3.5 billion number being bandied about is the total amount give by the court since the inception of the vaccine court in 1989).
$1.74 billion! HA! You lose!
You didn't let me finish. Let's do some fun math here - 3727 claims divided by 3,153,876,236 doses of vaccines amounts to 0.000118%, which is just over 1 compensable claim per million doses. Hm, one per million sounds vaguely familiar. Anyway, the amount the vaccine court has awarded seems huge, but it is far less important than the actual number of cases, and the number of cases is far less important than the proportion of compensable cases compared to doses given.

I'll repeat - one per million.

As for the claim that vaccine manufacturers are immune from being sued, no they aren't. While it is true in the US that you go through the vaccine court first, it is still possible for the manufacturers to be sued. And this is of course ignoring the fact that the vaccine court (and NCVIP) only applies in one country on the planet.

21) But only 10% of vaccine reactions are even reported! The real number is much higher!
I'm not sure where that estimate came from, but you sure do like to repeat it. Regardless, of course most adverse events aren't reported, because most vaccine reactions are mild and self-limiting (injection site pain, swelling, and redness). My arm was a bit sore after my last flu shot. Technically that is a "vaccine reaction", but did I report it? No. The serious ones get reported.

22) It's my child, so it's my choice.
Well that's a rather stupid thing to say. Of course it's your choice, and no one is saying it isn't (except the truly hardcore vaccine proponents, who may overstate things about child protective services and all that bullshit). But what if you choose to beat your child with a plank of wood? Is that your choice?

Yes, how you raise your child is your choice. No one is trying to take your choices away from you. If you want to feed your kid nothing but organic, free range, sugar-free, gluten-free, GMO-free kale, that's your prerogative. You'll probably end up with a malnourished (and picky) (and very angry) kid, but that's completely up to you. And sure, not vaccinating your child is also your choice. No one is going to force you to take your kid to the doctor for her shots no matter what antivax (or pro-vax) fear mongers want you to believe, and no one is going to snatch them away and do it without your knowledge or consent. But if you are making that choice based on misinformation and fear, then you are making the wrong choice.

23) Compulsory vaccines are wrong.
I suppose that depends on your definition of "wrong". If you mean it violates your civil rights or civil liberties or personal medical liberty or whichever other buzz phrase you choose to use, well no it doesn't.
Yes it does!
No it doesn't. If you still think it does, then you happen to disagree with the United States Supreme Court which ruled against you in Jacobson v Massachusetts.
But that was only one ruling!
Then you must not know about Zucht v. King, in which the Supreme Court ruled that schools may refuse admission to children who are not vaccinated.

There are currently mandatory vaccination laws in Argentina, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, China, Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Malta, Latvia, Pakistan. Poland, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Ukraine (no, the US and Canada have no federal law mandating vaccines, though all 50 states and 3 provinces require children to be vaccinated prior to starting school).

It is legal and it is constitutional. You just don't like it. That makes it neither wrong nor illegal.

24) Unvaccinated children are healthier.
HAHAHAHAHAHA no seriously you actually said this? Really? Extra points off if you cited the retracted-then-published-in-a-predatory-journal Mawson questionnaire (not study) from Journal of Translational Science or the German homeopath Bachmair questionnaire (not study). Fortunately there are actual studies that look at the health of vaccinated vs unvaccinated children, such as these:
Vaccination Status and Health in Children and Adolescents
Early-life determinants of asthma from birth to age 20 years: A German birth cohort study
The effect of vaccination on children's physical and cognitive development in the Philippines
Vaccinated versus unvaccinated children: how they fare in first five years of life.
High Intensive Care Unit Admission Rate for 2013–2014 Influenza Is Associated with a Low Rate of Vaccination

Guess what they show? I'll give you two guesses.

Did you guess "Unvaccinated children are NOT healthier but contract vaccine-preventable diseases at a MUCH higher rate than vaccinated children?"

No? Then you're fucking wrong. Because that's what they all say.

25) But there is no true study of unvaccinated vs vaccinated children!
True, because that would be unethical.
WHY?
Because the study you're looking for would purposefully withhold vaccines from 50% of the study participants (you know, those vulnerable children you think you're trying to protect). A "true" vaccinated-unvaccinated study would observe tens or hundreds of thousands of children from birth through adulthood, with only half of them getting vaccinated, leaving the other half vulnerable, though no one would know which half was which. While I'm sure some of you True Believers would recklessly volunteer your child to be in the unvaccinated arm of such a study, that's not the way these double-blind studies work. First, there would be a 50% chance that anyone else's child would be in the unvaccinated arm, leaving them vulnerable to various diseases, and no reasonable parent would consent to such a study. Plus, there would be a 50% chance your precious snowflake would be in the vaccinated arm. You ok with that?

Regardless, no researcher with any sense of ethics would allow such a study to be done, knowing that so many children are being left unprotected from so many preventable diseases, and no institutional review board would allow such a study to be proposed, let alone done.

26) According to VAERS . . .
I'm not going to let you finish that argument, because if you are using the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System in your antivax argument, I have calculated a 99.9923% chance that you have no fucking idea what VAERS is or how it works. Anyone can report any adverse reaction in VAERS. I'll repeat - anyone can report any adverse reaction in VAERS. There are several children who have died in car accidents in VAERS:
There was also (for a short time) a report in VAERS of Dr. James Laidler receiving a measles vaccine, and the following day his skin turned green, his muscles grew, and he displayed uncontrolled rage: signs that he was turning into The Incredible Hulk. As Dr. Laidler wrote,
And before you ask, that's not a joke. I mean the "reaction" was clearly a joke, but the fact that Hulk is in VAERS is not. It just underscores the worthlessness in using VAERS as evidence that vaccines are unsafe. Do not misunderstand me, VAERS is extremely important because it can help scientists track side effects from various vaccines. But make no mistake: VAERS is not evidence that "vaccine damage" is real or that vaccines are dangerous.

27) But vaccines are not 100% effective.
Well no, no they aren't. Has anyone ever claimed they are? If so, he was lying. Seat belts aren't 100% effective either, but you should still fucking wear one. And before you say, "Well vaccines don't work that well anyway!", let's just see how well they do work:
Incidence of tetanus: decreased by 96%
Incidence of pertussis: decreased by 86%
Incidence of measles: decreased by over 99%
Incidence of hepatitis B: decreased by 87%
Incidence of diphtheria: decreased by 100%

Not effective? Really? How much more effective can you possibly get?

28) But vaccines are not 100% safe.
Nothing is 100% safe. When discussing severe side effects, vaccines are approximately 99.9999% safe (1 severe adverse event per 1 million doses). If I told you that the severe complication rate from a "routine" surgery was 1/1000, would you run away screaming? Probably not, but that is the true number for "routine" gall bladder surgery, and it is literally one thousand times higher than the risk from any vaccine. And while many severe surgical complications result in death or permanent disability, the overwhelming majority of patients with severe adverse reactions from vaccines recover completely.

29) The flu vaccine is worthless. 
I will agree that the flu vaccine is the least effective vaccine available, and the efficacy varies from year to year depending on how close the vaccines approximate the prevalent infecting strains. As opposed to the ones above, the average efficacy is around 45%, which at first admittedly sounds pretty terrible. But look at it this way - 45% is literally infinity times higher than 0%, which is exactly how effective not getting a flu shot is.

30) But the flu shot causes Guillain–Barré syndrome. 
GBS is a known complication of the flu shot - an extremely rare one. The relative risk of GBS after any flu shot is 1.41 (1.84 after pandemic flu shot, 1.22 after seasonal flu shot). However, the risk of GBS is significantly higher (about 1-8 cases per 100,000 population) after actually getting infected with the flu (or other infections).

The risk of GBS after flu vaccination is less than 1 per million (there's that damned statistic again), and the vast majority of cases of GBS recover fully.

31) But the flu shot causes the flu.
No it doesn't, and it never has. Not occasionally, not sometimes, NEVER. The flu shot is a dead virus vaccine, meaning it is 100% biologically impossible to get the flu from a flu shot. Feeling a little crummy for a day or two after a flu shot is not the flu - that's your body's immune system reacting to the shot, meaning it is doing what it is supposed to do. If you got the actual flu immediately after getting a flu shot, you had either 1) probably already acquired the virus but hadn't shown symptoms yet, or 2) picked it up wherever you got the shot.

Note this refers to the flu shot, not the flu mist, which is an attenuated vaccine.

32) Oh yeah, the flu mist sheds!
Yes it does, but it is only for about a week and at very low levels. And there are exactly 0 reported cases of actual illness from this virus. None. Zero. It has never happened.

33) Genetic drift means the attenuated flu virus can change back to wild-type and cause infections.
This is absolutely true. In fact, this most probably will happen. And the odds are about 1 in 100 quintillion replication cycles. For those of you unfamiliar with that number, it's 100,000,000,000,000,000,000. When you do the math, it will take approximately 1000 years for this to happen, and hopefully by then all infectious diseases (and antivaxxers along with them) will have been eradicated.

34) I've never gotten the flu shot, and I've never gotten the flu.
Well isn't that nice. I have no idea what you think that proves, but let me pose this scenario: I put a banana in my fireplace every night before I go to sleep, and I have never had a bear break into my house. So does that mean the banana prevents bear attacks?

Ok ok, I'll give you a slightly less silly analogy - I've never gotten into a serious car accident and I don't wear my seat belt, so I don't need to wear a seat belt. Or consider this - I do not have a smoke detector in my house or a fire extinguisher, and I have never had a fire in my house, so I need neither a smoke detector nor a fire extinguisher. Or how about this - my kid has never crashed his bicycle and suffered a severe traumatic brain injury and he never wears a helmet, so he doesn't need to wear a helmet.

Now do you see how stupid that sounds?

The fact that you've never gotten the flu despite not getting the flu shot doesn't mean you don't need the flu shot, it just means you happened not to need it before. It doesn't mean your immune system is better than anyone else's or that you are better than anyone else. It only indicates that you have been lucky so far.

35) How could you possibly give a 1-day old baby a hepatitis B shot?
Hepatitis B is not just an infection of IV drug abusers and prostitutes. It is an extremely serious infection worldwide, with nearly 300 million people suffering from it. An estimated 2 million children worldwide are infected with hep B. The big problem is that when contracted as a child, hepatitis B is much more likely to develop into a chronic disease, resulting in cirrhosis or liver cancer. It can be transmitted from mother to child during childbirth, or from child-to-child from bites or other bodily fluids. No one is saying your precious flower is going to be shooting up heroin at age 3, but can you guarantee the little shit next door who is unknowingly and asymptomatically infected isn't going to bite your kid and give him an instant death sentence?

The great part about the hep B vaccine is that it is extremely effective, with a 72% worldwide drop in prevalence due to widespread vaccination. That should also put your "A one day old baby's immune system isn't ready for a vaccine" bullshit to rest. But wait, there's more! The best part is that the vaccine has been shown to last for at least 30 years, with no boosters needed after the initial 3-shot series. In other words, a vaccine given to a newborn child will last well into and through their doing-stupid-shit years.

Tell me again about vaccine immunity waning.

36) Yeah, vaccine immunity wanes!
Sigh. Sometimes, yes it does. However, if it waned significantly, we'd be seeing epidemics of diphtheria, polio, and measles in previously vaccinated adults. Have you heard of any of those?

No?

I'm shocked.

If you're still arguing, see #37 below.

37) The pertussis vaccine doesn't work.
You're wrong here, but I'll grant that you're very slightly less wrong than before. Let me fix it for you - the pertussis vaccine doesn't work as well as the previous one. The original pertussis vaccine was a whole cell vaccine, meaning the entire B. pertussis bacterium (inactivated) was used, and it was extremely effective. However, due to a relatively high rate of local adverse reactions (pain, redness, and swelling), it was swapped for an acellular vaccine, which contains only pertussis toxin or other various components of the bacterium and not the whole organism. However, not only is the acellular vaccine more expensive, but the local side effect rate is about the same as the whole cell version. To make things worse, it is not as effective as the whole cell vaccine, and immunity tends to wane within 5-7 years. But immunity to the tetanus portion of the DPT combination vaccine also wanes in about 5 years, so boosters are recommended. Huzzah! Science!

Yeah, that's the end of that story. It works, but not as well as the previous version, and not as well as it should. A better vaccine is necessary. Don't worry, I'm not entirely satisfied with that answer either.

38) Natural immunity is better than artificial immunity.
That depends on your definition of "better":
-Longer lasting? Sure.
-Doesn't require a scary shot with scary-sounding ingredients which are not actually scary once you understand them? Most definitely.
-Requires you to suffer through the disease AND SURVIVE in order to gain immunity? Fucking yes.

I'm not sure why you think suffering through a disease is better than, you know, not suffering through a disease.

Plus, I am also baffled why you think "natural" is somehow better. Belladonna is natural, but it will kill you. Tornadoes are completely natural, but they will kill you. It doesn't get much more natural than the Sydney funnel-web spider, but it will fucking kill you. Natural does not necessarily mean better. At all.

39) I've never met anyone who has had any of these diseases.
Well isn't that nice. You don't even see the irony of this statement, since it implies that the vaccines you eschew actually work extremely well.

All condescension aside, vaccines are a victim of their own success. Because they work so well and have nearly eradicated so many previously common diseases, doctors in practice now have probably never seen most (if not all) of them. The memory of children dead or disabled from polio, the vision of rows upon rows of children in hospitals in iron lungs has faded to the point where you actually believe it is relatively harmless. The fact that smallpox hospitals, entire hospitals dedicated to treating smallpox, no longer even need to exist because of vaccines is lost to the ravages of time. No one remembers the parents waiting in line to get their kids vaccinated against measles. You probably think these lines don't exist.

Fortunately you don't have to remember them, because here is photographic proof that they existed and still exist:
The fact that it doesn't happen where you live or that you've never seen it does not mean it does not happen.

40) But the number of cases of these diseases were all falling before vaccines!
I was wondering how long it would take to get to this one, which is commonly known as the "VACCINES DIDN'T SAVE US" argument, and it is 100% FALSE.

NO IT ISN'T FALSE! JUST LOOK AT THIS GRAPH!
I absolutely agree - look at it, because it is plainly obvious that you never have. at least not carefully. It says right on top "Mortality Rates", and as we can all plainly see the mortality rates were indeed falling since the turn of the 20th century to the point where the mortality was near 0 for most of these diseases.

HA! I WIN! YOU JUST ADMITTED IT!
No, I admitted that mortality was falling. During the first half of the 1900's there were huge advances in medical science, including supportive care, antibiotics, mechanical ventilation, etc. So of course mortality of everything would improve. Life expectancy in the US in 1900 was 47 years for a white man, and by 1950 it had increased to 65.6 (an improvement of over 28% in just 50 years).

But the number of cases of these diseases (ALL OF THEM) did not fall until the vaccines were introduced. Since you like graphs so much, take a look at these:

These are the disease rates of polio and measles, and you can once again plainly see that the rates DID NOT FALL until the vaccines were introduced. And as each vaccine was introduced, that disease rate fell.

I'm sure your next argument will be "But clean water and sanitation caused disease rates to fall, not vaccines".

41) But clean water and sanitation caused disease rates to fall, not vaccines.
At least you're predicable. If that is truly what you believe, then you'll have to explain why:
  • diphtheria rates waited to decline until the 1930's after the vaccine was introduced, and
  • polio rates waited to decline until 1955 when the vaccine was introduced, and
  • measles rates waited to decline until 1963 when the vaccine was introduced, and
  • rubella rates waited to decline until 1969 when the vaccine was introduced, and
  • chicken pox rates waited to decline until 1995 when the vaccine was introduced, and
  • rotavirus rates waited to decline until 2006 when the vaccine was introduced.
You'd have to be pretty daft to think clean water and sanitation could be so sneaky as to wait just until the vaccine came out to start decreasing those particular diseases. That damned sneaky sanitation and clean water. Do you think that clean water and sanitation suddenly improved in the US in 1995 or 2006 when the varicella and rotavirus vaccines were introduced?

Furthermore, while the mortality graph sure makes it looks like the mortality rate of these diseases was 0, it was not. Not remotely. Hundreds of children in the US still died every year of measles. Yeah, you know measles - that "harmless childhood disease":

Notice this graph starts in 1950, after the mortality rate had dropped so close to 0 according to your graph. That "so close to 0" still translated to 400-500 dead children in the US every year. And once the vaccine was introduced, then and only then did it actually drop to 0.

42) Vaccines cause SIDS.
No they don't. In fact, if you have made this argument, it only shows your stunning ignorance of this entire issue. At least with autism there was a bullshit paper published in 1998 which suggested a link (that's Wakefield's bullshit, in case you didn't catch the reference), but with SIDS, you have it entirely backwards: vaccines reduce the risk of SIDS by 50%.

In case you think I just pulled that number out of my ass, this is based not just one one paper, not two, but a meta-analysis of nine case-control studies looking at the relationship between vaccination and SIDS. And it found that vaccination decreases the risk of SIDS by half.

43) But SIDS is listed on the package insert as a potential side effect!
Oh, you mean this?
Read that carefully. It says, "Adverse events reported during post-approval use". It also says "Because these events are reported voluntarily from a population of uncertain size, it is not always possible to reliably estimate their frequencies or to establish a causal relationship".

The vaccine insert is a legal document, and vaccine manufacturers are legally obligated to list every adverse event that has been reported, regardless of whether or not the vaccine has caused it. That's also why you see "autism" on that list. It has been reported in children who have gotten that vaccine. But autism has also been reported in children who have not gotten that vaccine, though there is no legal document for that. The vaccine insert does not state, imply, or in any other way suggest that the vaccine caused it. Any of it.

I also think it is extremely ironic that you don't trust Big Pharma at all, until they publish the words "autism" and "SIDS" on one of their legal papers, and then you treat what they say as gospel.

44) No one has died in the US of measles since 2003.
If your point was to make yet another testament as to the effectiveness of the vaccine, I think you nailed it. Unfortunately, this is also demonstrably false, since a woman in Washington State died of measles-related complications in 2015, two people died of measles in 2010, and two people died of measles in 2009.

45) But over 100 people have died of the MMR since 2003, so more people die of the vaccine than the disease.
This "100" figure is derived from VAERS, which as you learned in #26 above is not designed to track that kind of data. So, there is no way to determine if this figure is even remotely true, though I highly doubt it is even close. There are about 4 million children born in the US each year, and since median vaccine coverage is 94.3%, that's 3,772,000 children getting the measles vaccine each year. As we know the serious adverse event rate is around 1 per million doses, so that would be between 3 and 4 serious adverse events annually, and most children recover completely. Even if they all died (they don't), that would be 16 years x 3.7 children = approximately 59 deaths, not 100. And that's if they all died, which they most assuredly do not.

So, no.

46) Doctors even admit that vaccines are dangerous.
Do they? Which ones? How many of them? This is just another form of "Some people believe . . ." If I were to say, "I believe the sky is purple", I could then logically go on to say "Some people believe the sky is purple". Is the sky purple? Does that make the sky purple? Of course not, but some people believe it is, so that means it might be true! Except that it doesn't.

What you're saying is that some doctors believe it, or at least they say they do. These are fringe doctors who are members of fringe groups who believe fringe things. So the important question is, what other beliefs do these doctors espouse? If you look hard enough you can find paleontologists who believe earth is less than 10,000 years old (like this guy who has a Ph.D in paleontology from Harvard. Seriously). I will grant that there are a few doctors who are antivaxxers, the most prominent and/or vocal being:
  • Joe Mercola, DO, who also believes that sunscreen causes skin cancer, homeopathy can treat autism, and HIV does not cause AIDS; and who has an online store;
  • Sherri Tenpenny, DO, who also believes an earthquake could cause California to fall off North America and sink into the Pacific Ocean, and who missed her entire third grade because she was too sick; and who has an online store;
  • Toni Bark, MD, who also practices homeopathy, and who has an online store;
  • Russell Blaylock, MD, who also believes in chemtrails, that aspartame causes multiple sclerosis, and that MSG is toxic to the brain; and who has an online store;
  • Tetyana Obukhanych, PhD who is not a physician but does have a Ph.D in immunology, who believes that immunology has no evidence-based explanation for immunity due to vaccines, that vaccines compromise our "natural immunity", and that homeopathy works;
  • Jack Wolfson, DO, who touts himself as a "holistic cardiologist", charges a $2800 fee for an initial consultation, and who believes children should get measles, mumps, rubella, and chicken pox because it is "their right"; and who has an online store;
  • Kelly Brogan, MD, who is also an HIV-AIDS denialist, advises diabetics not to take insulin, and who has an online store;
  • Suzanne Humphries, MD, who believes homeopathy works, who believes pertussis can be treated with vitamin C, and who believes the bible is a reason not to vaccinate; but who does not have an online store
  • Andrew Wakefield, who HAHAHAHAHA just kidding, he's not even a doctor anymore. Fuck that guy.
Yes, there are a handful of quacks out there who believe and endorse the same bullshit you do. But these are charlatans who are seizing on the very fear you are propagating to sucker in gullible people and make money. That's why these people almost invariably have online stores, and why Mercola brings in about $10 million per year from his bullshit website.

Keep in mind that every single major medical association in the entire world supports vaccines. Every. Single. One. And before you mention the American Association of Physicians and Surgeons, despite their official-sounding name they're one of those fringe groups I mentioned who have advocated such beliefs as AIDS denialism and abortions causing breast cancer. Quacks, all.

47) Vaccines cause autoimmune diseases.
There are a few known associations of vaccines increasing the risk of certain autoimmune diseases, such as the flu vaccine and Guillain-Barré and MMR with immune thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP). And it makes sense that vaccines could potentially cause autoimmune diseases, since they are designed to stimulate the immune system, and autoimmune diseases are disorders of that immune system. However, studies have shown that these are very rare. Using MMR and ITP as an example, there is an increased risk. However, that risk is lower than it is with measles infection, the clinical course of ITP after vaccination is less severe compared to ITP after measles infection, and 90% of children resolve completely within 6 months.

And before you tell me how risky that is, the actual risk in that study was 23 cases in 700,000 children. Do the math, and . . . you know what, don't. I've done it for you - it's 0.0033%.

As for other autoimmune diseases (like ASIA), these occurrences are so rare that studying them is difficult because of their rarity, and some researchers do not believe ASIA even exists. An excellent review article can be found here which details pretty much everything I just said.

48) Vaccines cause seizures.
Hooray! You finally said something true!
See? I told you vaccines were dangerous!
Oh don't worry, you aren't nearly as correct as you thought you were. Febrile seizures are a well-known and relatively common side effect of vaccines, but they are also a well-known and relatively common side effect of many other febrile illnesses. That's why they are called "febrile seizures" - it's the fever that causes them. The other reason you're wrong is that they aren't nearly as common as you think - this study found a risk of 1 febrile seizure per 3,300 vaccinations even when multiple vaccines were given at the same time. Keep in mind that 3-5% of children experience a febrile seizure each year that are unrelated to vaccines, so a busy paediatrician seeing 500 infants each year would see one vaccine-related febrile seizure every 5-10 years.

And here is the main point - just like any other febrile seizure, the seizures associated with vaccination do not cause or increase the risk of life-long seizure disorders. And this long-term follow up study of children who had febrile seizures showed no difference in academic performance compared to their peers.

49) Vaccines cause allergies, asthma, and eczema.
I'm assuming you're referring to the supposed epidemic of food allergies, peanut allergies, atopic dermatitis, etc that you believe are all caused by vaccines, because in your mind vaccines cause everything bad in the world and nothing bad every happened before vaccines were invented. Unfortunately, your belief is not supported by, you know actual data. This study of thousands of children across 97 centers in 10 countries showed no evidence that any vaccine is associated with food allergies, airborne allergies, or eczema. This study of over 1000 children found - gasp - the exact same thing. And this British study of over 29,000 children found - are you sitting down? - the exact same thing. And this study of nearly 15,000 children across 5 countries found - let me know when you tire of this - the exact same thing.

So who are we to believe - your unsubstantiated story of your kid developing a peanut allergy after getting vaccinated or multiple studies of tens of thousands of children across dozens of countries around the globe which all refute you?

50) What about the Cutter Incident?
This is one of those terribly unfortunate tragedies in medicine that should never happen but still did. A batch of live polio vaccines made by Cutter Laboratories in 1955 were not properly inactivated, and at least 120,000 people received them before they were recalled, now known as the Cutter Incident. This caused about 40,000 cases of mild polio, 56 cases of paralysis, and 5 deaths.

There are other medical tragedies, including the production and distribution of blood products tainted with HIV prior to the virus having been discovered, Dr. Mengele's horrific human experimentation during the Holocaust, and similar ghastly experiments on humans in Japan's Unit 731. But perhaps the most notorious is the 1932 Tuskegee Study, in which black men who were already infected with syphilis were knowingly not treated for the infection, even after penicillin was proved to treat it successfully in 1947. The investigators withheld both treatment and information about that treatment until a whistleblower finally blew the lid off in 1972. The fact that this continued for 40 years only compounds its utterly unethical nature, and it has fueled a deep distrust in the medical industry which continues to this day.

These occurrences are rare but terrible. There is absolutely no doubt that they should never happen. But they have, they did, and they still do. However, this is hardly a reason to argue against vaccination in general. Incidents like these should be taken as very difficult lessons from which we can learn and then prevent anything like them from ever happening again.

51) And the Simpsonwood meeting . . .
And here is where we start diving into Conspiracy Theory Land. This CDC conference ("Scientific Review of Vaccine Safety Datalink Information" actually happened in 2000. They reviewed the data regarding the possible link between thimerosal and autism and ultimately refuted any link, obviously. Enter your hero Robert F. Kennedy, Jr who wrote an article in 2005 (that was retracted by Salon) alleging the conference was intended to hide the evidence and that the lead author, Thomas Verstraeten, altered it.

Well there are a few problems with the bit of bullshit - first, the entire transcript of the meeting is freely available (for example here) (warning, it's really long), and there is no evidence of any conspiracy to cover up or change any evidence. Second, the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions reviewed the entire affair and found no evidence of any impropriety by either Dr. Verstraeten or the CDC. In fact, they concluded "Instead of hiding the data or restricting access to it, CDC distributed it, often to individuals who had never seen it before, and solicited outside opinion regarding how to interpret it".

That doesn't sound like anyone trying to hide something.

52) Well we just need safer vaccines.
I wish I could just say "Obviously" and leave it at that. We need safer everything - safer cars, safer bicycle helmets, safer sports gear, safer lawn mowers, safer lithium batteries, safer home wiring, safer food, safer schools. Everything around us should be safe, and everything around us (for the most part) has been designed specifically to be as safe as possible with the available technology. As safer technology evolves (think seat belts followed by air bags), products get ever safer. The same goes with vaccines. As vaccine science has evolved, the number of antigens in vaccines has decreased dramatically even as the number of vaccines given has increased:
And as the science continues to evolve, the products will continue to become safer.

53) Measles protects against cancer.
This ridiculous claim is based on this one article (I can't even call it a study) from 1998 (does that year ring any other antivax bells?) in which anthroposophic practitioners (I can't even call them doctors) in Switzerland conducted a questionnaire and supposedly found that the number of febrile illnesses (ie measles, mumps, rubella, chicken pox, pertussis, etc) was inversely proportional to the risk of non-breast cancer. Why is this such a bullshit claim? To start, anthroposophic medicine is an alternative practice based on occult bullshit, risible bullshit, homeopathic bullshit, and other assorted bullshit. As an example, Rudolf Steiner, one of the founders of anthroposophic medicine, believed 1) that the sex of a baby was determined at conception by the alignment of the stars, and 2) that the heart was not actually a pump, but that instead blood circulates via its own "biological momentum". If the founder of such a cult (I can't even call it a form of alternative medicine) can't even understand concepts as (relatively) simple as genetics and the circulatory system, I can hardly expect his devout followers to understand something as complex as running a scientific study.

And this was in fact not a scientific study. It was merely a survey of anthroposophic practitioners with all the inherent confirmation bias and observation bias one would expect. This is similar to the Bachmair questionnaire where only home-school mothers were surveyed by a homeopath. It begins with a biased premise and just goes off the rails from there.

The main reason this article is completely worthless is that it has not been replicated despite 20 years of opportunity to do so. This sort of information should have elicited an "AHA!" reaction from the medical world. Instead, there has been nothing. No replication, no confirmation, nothing.

54) People who get vaccines shouldn't be around sick people because they shed.
You probably flashed this graphic from Johns Hopkins:
This was indeed the recommendation by Johns Hopkins as a precaution prior to actual information being gathered. However, this issue has now been extensively studied, and Hopkins has revised their statement:

The recommendation now is "Close contacts of patients with compromised immunity should not receive live oral poliovirus vaccine because they might shed the virus and infect a patient with compromised immunity. Close contacts can receive other standard vaccines because viral shedding is unlikely and these pose little risk of infection to a subject with compromised immunity."

There are rare reports of various live virus vaccines shedding:
A child vaccinated with rotavirus vaccine (which sheds in stool) infected his unvaccinated older sibling, who did not require admission to hospital and recovered.
A child vaccinated with MMR came down with a mild case of vaccine-strain measles over a month after vaccination. All symptoms resolved within 5 days.

In short, yes some live virus vaccines shed as these case reports prove. However, the cases are milder than wild-type infections, and they are extremely rare. Millions of doses of these vaccines are given every year, so this argument only strengthens the argument that vaccines are extremely safe.

55) The flu shot has never been tested for its ability to cause cancer.
You obviously posted this graphic:
Here is the reality - all vaccines (ALL OF THEM) go through pre-clinical toxicology testing for safety, including mutagenicity and carcinogenicity.  But the problem with the flu shot is that the component for each year's shot is different, so each year's shot cannot possibly be tested prior to being used. But the data from several decades' worth of flu vaccination is that it does not cause cancer.

56) Bill Gates said vaccines are being used for depopulation.
This is the misinterpretation that just won't die. This is NOT what he said. Here is the quote taken WAAAAAAAAAAAAY out of context:
First, we’ve got population. The world today has 6.8 billion people. That’s headed up to about nine billion. Now, if we do a really great job on new vaccines, health care, reproductive health services, we could lower that by, perhaps, 10 or 15 percent
See! He wants to reduce population by 10-15%!
No he doesn't. As I said, this quote is taken out of context. He is talking about ways to reduce the creation of carbon dioxide, and one of those is to reduce the rate of population growth, not to reduce population. THAT is what he meant by "lower that by 10-15%". He has said repeatedly that as vaccination rates go up in developing nations, infant mortality goes down, and as more children survive, parents don't feel the need to have 8 or 10 children anymore (emphasis added):
"A surprising but critical fact we learned was that reducing the number of deaths actually reduces population growth. […] Contrary to the Malthusian view that population will grow to the limit of however many kids can be fed, in fact parents choose to have enough kids to give them a high chance that several will survive to support them as they grow old. As the number of kids who survive to adulthood goes up, parents can achieve this goal without having as many children."
and
"When a mother can choose how many children to have, her children are healthier, they’re better nourished, their mental capacities are higher—and parents have more time and money to spend on each child’s health and schooling. That’s how families and countries get out of poverty. This link between saving lives, a lower birthrate, and ending poverty was the most important early lesson Melinda and I learned about global health."
There is no eugenics conspiracy, no depopulation, no agenda 21, and no conspiracy to decrease the world population to 500 million.

57) Vaccines are contaminated with harmful particles.
Really? Which is it, aluminum, mercury, animal DNA, antigens, or nanoparticles which are so harmful?

Anyway, you're talking about Antonietta Gatti's rather silly evaluation of so-called contamination of vaccines with nanoparticles which backfired. First, you'll notice the paper is on Medcrave, not Pubmed. That should be a huge red flag, and if you don't know why, then you have no business trying to evaluate a scientific paper. Regardless, Gatti and her partners found varying numbers of inorganic particles when they evaporated 44 samples of 30 different vaccines and looked at them under an electron microscope. And they found tiny particles of various substances including tungsten, gold, aluminum, etc, ranging from two to 1821 particles per 20 microlitres of fluid. While that seems scary, that is an incredibly small amount of these substances compared to the amount of the vaccine, which is itself very small.

They didn't use any controls, so there is no telling how many of these particles would be found in tap water or sterile saline or distilled water or anything else. The bottom line is that nothing is completely pure, but this study actually shows that vaccines are very, very pure.

58) But Gardasil . . .
I'm going to stop you right there, because you said either "premature ovarian failure" or "kills" or "maims" or some other bullshit. I'm sure you probably mentioned some scary-sounding anecdote about a young girl getting her Gardasil shot and then becoming lethargic or wheelchair-bound or dead. Right?

Ooooh wait I know, you said that there are no Gardasil safety studies. Right?

Oh, you said there are no placebo-controlled safety studies, right?

Wrong, wrong, and wrong. In fact, here is a review of 109 safety studies across six countries including over 2.5 million subjects which showed only an increased risk of local injection site reactions (pain, redness, swelling), but no increased risk of any of the various things supposedly attributed to HPV vaccines, including demyelinating diseases and neurological syndromes.

And here is a study of nearly 1 million girls in Denmark and Sweden which shows no increased risk of autoimmune, neurological, or thromboembolic events.

59) Gardasil causes premature ovarian failure.
Sorry, I left that out the last one. There are case reports of teenage girls developing primary ovarian insufficiency after HPV vaccination. But these are mere anecdotes, and even before HPV vaccination there was a 22/100,000 rate of primary ovarian insufficiency, so it has always existed. But this study of nearly 200,000 girls showed no increased risk of primary ovarian insufficiency after HPV vaccination.

60) Herd immunity doesn't exist.
Sure it does. It's been demonstrated numerous times, but I think one of the best examples was this study from Burkina Faso, in which nearly 90% of the population at risk was vaccinated for meningitis (Neisseria meningitidis serotype A, or NmA), and 13 months later when the subjects (both the vaccinated and unvaccinated) were resampled, exactly ZERO still carried NmA. As the authors conclude, "The disappearance of NmA carriage among both vaccinated and unvaccinated populations is consistent with a vaccine-induced herd immunity effect".

That's just one example. There are many others.

61) X didn't exist before vaccines.
It doesn't really matter what you said didn't exist before vaccines, unless you said "herd immunity". I've seen various claims here, but the most common ones are autism (of course) and SIDS. Leo Kanner first described autism in 1943 before all but two vaccines (smallpox and diphtheria) were invented (diphtheria antitoxin was invented in 1901, and Hans Asperger was lecturing about a group of children with autism in 1938, but the vaccine didn't come out until the 1920's). And Eugen Bleuler first used the term "autism" in 1908. That is a very long-winded way of saying yes, autism actually existed before vaccines. Except smallpox, but I haven't seen a single person arguing that the smallpox vaccine causes autism. Probably because it doesn't.

As for SIDS, "crib death", or "cot death", the term was first coined in 1969. However, there are many descriptions of sudden infant death all throughout history. For example, this researcher found evidence of SIDS in the 1800'sAnd several examples of SIDS as far back as the Middle Ages and even from the bible (if you choose to believe it) can be seen here. Besides, the rate of SIDS has been dropping since it was discovered that putting infants on their backs decreases the risk.
A line graph showing the rates of SIDS and other sleep-related causes of infant death from 1990 to 2013. The Y axis shows deaths per 1,000 births and ranges from 0 to 1.8. The X axis depicts the years 1990 through 2013. Total SUID deaths declined from ~1.5 in 1990 to 1 in 2013. Total SIDS deaths declined from ~1.3 in 1990 to ~0.5 in 2013. Deaths from unknown causes held steady between 1990 and 2013 at a rate of ~0.2. Deaths from accidental suffocation and strangulation in bed rose from ~0 in 1990 to ~0.2 in 2013.

Do you know what else decreases the risk of SIDS? Anyone? Beuller?

62) Polio never went away, it was just renamed transverse myelitis or GBS or acute flaccid myelitis.
Take a look at this:
Image result for polio virus
Any idea what it is? If you said "That's a polio virus", then chances are you are not an antivaxxer, because that is, in fact, the polio virus. I only say that because if you're an antivaxxer you probably couldn't tell a polio virus from a volleyball. You see, polio is a viral disease, and all those other things are not (as far as we know). Polio virus can be isolated from a patient with a paralytic disease. It cannot be isolated from Guillain–Barré syndrome, because it does not cause Guillain–Barré syndrome. It cannot be isolated from transverse myelitis patients, because it does not cause transverse myelitis. It cannot be isolated from acute flaccid myelitis patients, because it does not cause acute flaccid myelitis. See where I'm going with this? While we don't know what does cause acute flaccid myelitis, we do know it is not polio.

There are several different, distinct paralytic diseases, and they all present differently. That's why they are different, distinct diseases. Polio is polio, and not polio is not polio.

63) There have been measles (or pertussis or mumps) outbreaks in highly vaccinated populations.
Yes there have, because no vaccine is 100% effective. All this does is underscore the need for both 1) better vaccines (especially pertussis), and 2) herd immunity.

What you are ignoring are the far-more-common outbreaks (and subsequent deaths) in unvaccinated (or undervaccinated) populations. And no, I'm not going to use the Disneyland outbreak in 2015, even though 45% of the patients from California were unvaccinated while only 7% were fully vaccinated (the rest were either undervaccinated or had an unknown vaccination status).

Oops, I guess I am going to use that as an example. An even better example is the 2019 Philippines outbreak, with nearly 15,000 cases and over 230 deaths (so far as of this writing), 65% of whom were unvaccinated.

Another example is the current outbreak of measles in Ukraine, with 24,000 cases and 9 deaths

And an even better example is the ongoing outbreak of measles in Madagascar, where they have had over 82,000 cases and about 1000 deaths, two-thirds of whom were unvaccinated. If you aren't seeing a pattern here, then you're even more intellectually dishonest than I could have predicted.

64) Squalene something something Gulf War Syndrome . . .
I would have put this up in the "toxins" section, but I don't see it terribly often, so I decided to put it waaaaaaaaaaay down here. Squalene is not an adjuvant by itself, but it is when emulsified with surfactants. It is only added to certain flu vaccines in Europe and one for seniors in the US, so it is not present in any childhood vaccine. The reason for the fear is the supposed presence of anti-squalene antibodies found in American soldiers with the so-called Gulf War Syndrome.

A few problems with this:

  1. Squalene is a naturally occurring substance, and your liver is making it right now as you read this;
  2. Anti-squalene antibodies have been found in people who have never receive any squalene-containing vaccine;
  3. Squalene was studied and found not to cause anti-squalene antibodies to be created.
It isn't squalene. At all. This is just another example of you being scared of something that sounds scary.

65) Peanut oil is used as a vaccine adjuvant and is causing the peanut allergy epidemic.
A peanut oil adjuvant was tested in the 1960's, but it was never approved for use and is currently found in exactly 0 vaccines anywhere on the planet. While it is (probably) true that peanut (and other food) allergies are increasing in many countries, it isn't vaccines causing it, because much like the mythical truly well-informed antivaxxer, peanut oil adjuvants do not exist.

What is causing it is (probably) the attempted environmental sterilisation that too many parents undertake to keep their kids "safe" from germs. Unfortunately this practice appears to be preventing the normal development of the immune system and is increasing the risk of food allergies. In case you think I'm just pulling this out of my ass (which I admittedly was when I started talking about it over a decade ago), recent evidence fully supports this notion.


66) Measles virus doesn't even exist.
This one may sound completely batshit insane, but that's only because it fucking is. This ridiculous mind-bending claim comes from ultra antivaxxer Stefan Lanka, who bet 100,000 euros that no one could prove the measles virus exists. Of course someone (Dr. David Bardens) proved him wrong beyond any reasonable doubt, and a court ordered Lanka to pay up. But the decision was reversed on appeal, judging that the evidence Bardens provided had to live up to Lanka's expectations. Bardens could probably have invented a machine to embiggen the virus to 2m in diameter and shoved it in Lanka's face, but so deeply entrenched are his rabid antivax beliefs that he would have still denied its existence.

Yeah, measles virus exists. Here it is.

67) We never had all these vaccines when I was a kid, I got all these diseases, and I'm fine.
Congratulations! You just described survivorship bias. Because there are literally millions of other people who contracted these exact same diseases and are now dead because of them. No vaccine-preventable disease is anywhere close to 100% fatal (except rabies), so of course most people who got them survived unscathed. This doesn't make the diseases benign (see #16), it just makes you one of the majority who made it. Not every kid is as lucky.

68) Vaccines make you gay.
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

No but seriously, HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

If you believe a word that comes out of Alex Jones' mouth, then you are quite literally a lost cause. There really isn't a refutation to this, because it is actually that risible.

69) Polio was caused by DDT, not poliovirus.
This is just an example of germ theory denialism. It is true that DDT was used to try to prevent the spread of polio, because at the time (mid 1940s) it was incorrectly thought that polio was transmitted by insects like mosquitoes or flies (it is actually faecal-oral).

The big problem with this hypothesis is the timing. The first polio epidemic in the US, for example was in 1894, and the polio virus was discovered in 1908. DDT, on the other hand, was invented in 1874 but was not discovered to be an insecticide until 1939, well after polio was harming children.

70) There hasn't been a vaccine safety study in 30 years.
I see you are a fan of Robert F. Kennedy, Jr's brand of antivax bullshit. This claim has been wildly twisted from its origins and stems from a 1986 US law (NCVIA ring a bell?) which, among other things, required that HHS report vaccine safety studies to congress. But somehow even though the reports were done, they were not all properly filed. Let me repeat - the studies were done, they just weren't properly reported. In fact, here is one now.

Do not misunderstand me, the law was not followed here, and that's not a good thing. I don't know why the reports were not properly filed, and I don't know why HHS didn't present the information to congress as they were supposed to. Regardless, safety studies have been done, task forces have regularly met and reported on vaccine safety, vaccine safety oversight committees have been formed and reported to HHS, the Clinical Immunization Safety Assessment project was started in 2001, etc etc etc.

The evidence shows that vaccines are safe, that evidence just wasn't reported properly to congress. That does not mean it does not exist.

71) MMS can cure autism.
No. It. Can. Not. There is literally no evidence to support such a ludicrous claim, so I can't even cite anything refuting it. And if you really think giving your child chlorine dioxide (an industrial bleach), either orally or rectally, can cure his autism, then you are even more evil than I could have imagined.

72) I'm not anti-vaccine, but . . .
If you start a statement with "No offence, but . . .", you can be assured that the next thing out of your mouth will be offensive. By the same token, any sentence starting with "Not to sound racist, but . . ." is guaranteed to be followed by something racist. Similarly, if you start with "I'm not anti-vaccine, but . . .", there is at least a 99.9974% chance (I calculated it) that yes, you are anti-vaccine.

No, you are not "pro safe-vaccines", because vaccines are already safe. No, you are not "pro medical autonomy", because no one is forcing you to vaccinate yourself or your children. No, you are not "pro informed consent", because informed consent is already done prior to vaccination. What you are is doing using these excuses as excuses.
And what you are is anti-vaccine.

73) Vaccines are against my religion.
Unless you happen to be a Christian Scientist or in the Dutch Reformed church, no they aren't. There are exactly zero major religions on the planet that have any doctrine, law, or rule against vaccines. This review article lists all major religions, including Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Judaism. Not even Catholicism forbids vaccines, despite some of them being grown using cell lines from an aborted foetus. According to the National Catholic Bioethics Center, if there is no alternative, "One is morally free to use the vaccine regardless of its historical association with abortion. The reason is that the risk to public health, if one chooses not to vaccinate, outweighs the legitimate concern about the origins of the vaccine."

Besides, Christian Scientists believe that disease can be cured through prayer and the Dutch Reformed church believes vaccines interfere with "divine providence", whatever that means. So no, your religion does not outlaw vaccines.

74) Vaccines are injected directly into the bloodstream.
This is a rather strange claim that seems to be pure and unadulterated fear mongering, because so fucking what if they are? There are lots of things injected directly into the bloodstream: saline, anaesthestics, pain medicine, antibiotics, anti-convulsants, sedatives. You know those vitamin drips that are so in these days? Yup, directly into the bloodstream. Are any of you demanding to know what's in your regenerative vitamin B infusion at the vitamin bar? Are any antivaxxers demanding that their anaesthesiologist list the ingredients in their magic sleeping potion? I didn't think so. Regardless, do you know what is not injected directly into the bloodstream? Come on, I'll give you one guess.

That's right, vaccines. There are exactly ZERO vaccines that are injected intravenously. None. Zip. All vaccines (other than oral polio and intranasal flu) are administered into the muscle (intramuscular), skin (subcutaneous), or dermis (intradermal). If you are getting a vaccine directly into your bloodstream, then whoever is giving it to you is making a mistake.

75) Vaccines are unavoidably unsafe.
Yes they are.
HA! I WIN!
No you don't, because if you use this argument then you don't know what "unavoidably unsafe" means. All it means is that there is no way for the manufacturer to make them 100% safe and prevent any side effect.

This term comes from the Restatement (Second) of Torts, which was written by the American Law Institute in 1965, 1977, and 1979. In it, an "unavoidably unsafe products" is described as "an apparently useful and desirable product, attended with a known but apparently reasonable risk." You can read a thorough explanation here.

Medicines have side effects. This is a well-known fact that is not disputed. Vaccines are medicines. This is also a well-known fact that is not disputed. Therefore, vaccines will have side effects, including serious side effects such as anaphylaxis. There is no way to predict who will develop such a reaction, so there is no way to make the vaccine safer in that regard. However, as we have learned above the risk of such serious side effects is about 1 per million doses, so the benefits far outweigh these risks.

76) Vaccines are just ways to make money.
Vaccines are made by pharmaceutical companies, and pharmaceutical companies are designed to make money. This is not even debatable, because it is fact. However, according to the World Health Organisation vaccines comprise less than 2% of pharmaceutical companies' revenue. These companies make far more with blockbuster medicines like Lipitor or Viagra. Vaccines, on the other hand, are just not big money makers.
But doctors make a ton giving vaccines!
Most doctors make exactly fuck all from giving vaccines. In the UK, doctors don't get paid any extra for giving vaccines. Exactly 0. In the US, studies have shown that paediatricians make little-to-no money giving vaccines.
But American doctors get a $400 per patient bonus for giving vaccines!
You seriously believe that? How many paediatricians do you know driving Aston Martins home to their enormous mansions? That "bonus" you've heard about does exist, but it is not a bonus per shot, it's a small bonus given to a doctor by an insurance company for their entire cohort of patients if they immunise above a certain percentage. That is one bonus per doctor for all their patients, not for each one. After all, it's far less expensive for the insurance companies to prevent a disease than to pay for treating it, and just like pharmaceutical companies, insurance companies are also in the business of making money, not paying for medical care.

Take for example this case of tetanus in an unvaccinated 6-year-old boy who spent 8 weeks in hospital at a cost of over $811,000. On the other hand, a tetanus shot costs $64 in the US, £52 in the UK, and $0 in Australia. I've done the arithmetic once again, and treating the disease cost the parents' insurance company (assuming they were insured) 12,671 times the cost of the vaccine.

Now tell me more about vaccines being all about the money. Go ahead. Just try it.

- - - - -

Whew.

That's all I have at the moment. I'm sure there are myriad other bullshit anti-vaccine claims out there, so if I missed any good ones please comment below.

208 comments:

  1. They are probably out there but I've never heard of anyone who has a problem with getting a tetanus shot.

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    1. anti tetanus people absolutely exist. see Oregon tetanus case from 2017

      https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/cdc-unvaccinated-oregon-boy-almost-dies-of-tetanus-1m-to-save-him/

      I've got them in my town.

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    2. Here you go

      https://www.opb.org/news/article/oregon-health-tetanus-pediatric-case-thirty-years-cdc/

      Delete
    3. Well, I do. I mean, I'm in favor of them in a general sense, but I try to avoid getting a tetanus vaccine myself because I seem to react rather strongly to the vaccine, have a lot of pain, and a day or 2 of not being able to move my arm. So, I won't get one unless I have an incident that puts me at high risk for the disease. (if I'd been that kid in the OR case, I'd have gotten the damn tetanus shot. I also would have been sutured by a DOCTOR, not at home)

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    4. Oi. There was one tetanus-vaccine refuser visiting the comment section of Orac's blog, somewhere two weeks ago.
      Bit of a troll, although he seemed seriously claiming that just letting his children free-ranging was enough to get protection against tetanus 'naturally'.

      Other people refuse the tetanus vaccine because they are not living in the dirt like some common people from a sh!thole country. Or because it's not contagious.
      Some years ago, tetanus refusal was the fashion, because, you see, it's almost impossible to develop a natural immunity to it, so how can a vaccine do it? (short answer - an inactive toxin isn't busy killing you while your immune system is figuring out how to catch it)

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    5. the story of the kid in Oregon: a year in the hospital and over a million dollars spent keeping him alive - and his parents are still antivaxxers.

      and yeah, I'm a bit lazy about keeping up on my own boosters. but when I'm reminded I go do it. it hurts less each time.

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    6. The parents of the child that recovered from tetanus in Oregon after over a month in ICU refused a tetanus shot before and after that.

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    7. I'm embarrassed to be an Oregonian at times..

      I was in Seattle on vacation when measles became the new craze in Oregon.
      My goddaughter lives in Clark County in Washington and she is vaccinated, I still worry about her because they are dealing with an outbreak for the last few months..

      Darwinism comes to mind. Playing Russian roulette with your kids being the only player makes you a shitty parent..

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    8. There are also people that say : "You can't get immunity from naturally contracted tetanus, therefore the tetanus vaccine can't possibly work !"
      (except that it is because you can get sick from few tetanus toxins, not enough for the body to develop immunity ; but the vaccine use enough neutralized toxins for immunity to happen)
      (I don't remember seeing this argument in english though, maybe it's from our batshit crazy french/belgians antivaxxers.)

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    9. A friend of mine did doctors without borders and when she was in africa a year and a half ago she had to watch a poor young boy with lockjaw pass away from complications caused by tetanus. She said it was the single most horrible thing shed ever seen in her entire life. It shook her to her core.

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    10. Lots of antivaxxers are against the tetanus vaccine. I was in an "argument" a while back who was really proud of himself because he had written a letter to a bunch of bishops in Africa. In the mail he claimed that there was proof that the vaccine was part of a birth control scheme and that the women that received the vaccine became infertile. My claim was that he was an idiot... https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/tetanus-vaccine-sterilization/

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    11. that's not just a lie, it's an obvious lie.

      Delete
    12. I almost put that in here, but I already had one farcical entry and didn't want a second.

      Delete
  2. Standing ovation, Doctor. Thank you.

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  3. This is an incredible resource, Doc. Thank you.

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  4. Really good and comprehensive post. One more thing I'll add: I love it when people say "When I was a kid in the '70s, we only got a few vaccines and now there are just so many!" Well what a shock, in 40 years we've come up with more good options. Most people are not clamoring for the good old days of the 1970's in any other aspect of health care. I don't think anyone shows up at the ER when their parent is having a stroke and say, "Forget about these new treatments, manage them like it was 1975!" Or if their kid tears up their knee, they would say, "No arthroscopic surgery for my kid, I tore up my knee in the 70's and I can still walk - treat them like that!" Do you really think that every other area of medical care has improved but vaccines reached perfection in 1975.

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  5. There are many documented cases of homosexual people and autistic people having been vaccinated. The human brain is getting smaller, Not due to our bodies being smaller, But vaccines. Vaccines can be very detrimental to the brain which is why brain size is shrinking. What is also interesting is that the homosexuality rate has also been raised since vaccinations were invented. There has also been an increase in documented cases of brain disease in the past 100 years. Therefore, It is reasonable to assume that vaccinations can cause changes that make you homosexual, Autistic, Or cause other brain diseases. This is not confusing cause and effect, It is the cause. Have you ever heard stories about children getting vaccinated when they are 18 due to anti-vax parents? Autism. Also were vaccinations in the bible? Didn't think so. The conclusion is don't vaccinate your children unless you want them to be homosexual, Autistic, Have a smaller brain, And worship satan. Thank you and goodbye.

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    Replies
    1. holy. fucking. crazytown. Doc you're going to have to add "brain shrinking" to this list.

      thank you for putting this all together.

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    2. You have no scientific background aside from being a housewife.

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    3. "Therefore, It is reasonable to assume that vaccinations can cause changes that make you homosexual, Autistic, Or cause other brain diseases."

      Homosexuality is not a brain disease, bigot.

      Also, you propose a post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy. Learn what that is, and how it applies, then try your argument again.

      Delete
    4. The Anonymous post from March 29 2019 at 20:16 must be snark because it's too stupid to be a real opinion.

      Delete
    5. This post has to be a joke...right? I mean people aren't capable of being that seriously stupid...can they?

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    6. I'm going to assume that this comment is pure satire.

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    7. When you introduce vaccine into the child, the child then grows and tries to find its own personality, and if this is inhibited by mercury or other substances present in the vaccine which enter the brain, the child becomes gay. The problem will especially be present in the next generations, because when gays have children, the children will carry along with them the DNA of their parent’s illness. Because homosexuality is a disease, even though the WHO has decided that it is not. Who cares! The reality is that it is so. Each vaccination produces homosexuality, because it prevents the formation of one’s personality. It is a microform of autism, if you will. You will see how many gays there will be in the next generation, it will be a disaster. That is the truth!

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    8. I present the anon as proof that people's brains are getting smaller. I also present the fact that there are people who think not getting vaccinated is a good idea. obviously people are getting stupider.

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    9. I am still assuming this is well-executed satire.

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    10. I hate this whole idea people have that theres something causing all these mental health problems showing up. "People didnt get them 100 years ago!" BECAUSE WE LITERALLY DIDNT HAVE PSYCHOLOGY! If someone heard voices or saw crazy things, they either heard the devil or were a prophet of some kind.
      If they had siezures it was either posession or communing with God or some other bullshit.
      Julius Caeser had epilepsy. They didnt call it that however. The term is recent. THE FUCKING DIAGNOSIS IS NOT!
      "But why are there so many gays now?" Because up until the 90s it was still not considered ok to be gay. Heck to lots of assholes like anon here it still isnt. If you came out as gay 50 years ago, bare minimum your parents kicked you out of the house.
      In Great britain it was illegal to hold a job without being on special drugs to try and change them. This happened to Allen Turing.
      People are coming out as gay suddenly because people are finally saying its ok

      Delete
    11. I assume this was cut/pasted from The Onion but I'm too lazy to Google it.

      Delete
    12. Has to be satire, from that last line on the OP. I can't read that line and think anyone was seriously trying to make a point. What scares me is that someone is bound to TAKE it seriously and build an anti-vaxx case from there. Human stupidity has no bounds, and that is one of the saddest things I can think of.

      BUT! With resources such as THIS amazing blog post, we can safely disregard disregard such stupidity. Any antivaxxer who refuses to read this, or remains unconvinced afterwards, isn't worth our time: we KNOW that they're just willfully stubborn and have decided to become ignorant. Propagation of this blog post might do a wonderful job of finally ending the antivaxx flaming discussions and wars, because anyone who's STILL antivaxx after this is a terminal case.

      A vaccine against stupidity would be a fine thing. Sigh.

      Oh wait, we do have one, it's called the brain. Wonder why so many people refuse to use it.

      Delete
    13. sadly, antivaxx really is that persistant.

      Delete
    14. What in the actual fuck did I read x2?
      Anon threw the sanity right out the window and swallowed a jug of stupid before he posted that batshit crazy shit..
      I have heard crazy conspiracy theories but this Anon said hold my beer I can show you real crazy thoughts..
      I am dumber for reading that, his stupidity shrank my brain..

      Doc with people as stupid as SatireAnon, how do they not forget to breathe and just slowly suffocate to death? I get the brain stem has it's roll but you would think people this stupid wouldn't believe in their brain stem and would try to bypass it to show the world how wrong every medical argument is and they would forget to breathe and suffocate.
      Why do some medical things apply but yet others just as researched and proven effective for years not apply?
      I can't get this Anons level of stupid to understand..

      Delete
    15. Anon, don't you DARE call me a disease! There isn't anything wrong with me, I am not a symptom or a side effect, being gay is not some condition to be cured.

      Delete
    16. Please don't get too riled up over some idiot's words on the internet. I sympathise with your feelings, but look at it this way: if you let him affect you that much, he's won. He's not worth your anger, your time, your energy, your acknowledgement. If someone wants to rile you up, getting riled up means he's won. Don't give him that pleasure.

      Besides, he's lumped that "pseudo-factoid" in with so many other ridiculous claims that credibility went out the window. Don't worry.

      Delete
    17. Peter i think its moreso we get riled up to help prevent others for falling for this drivel
      If we stand by and let this asshole preach his poison and do nothing, That is letting him win. As there Will be people who rally to his damn cause.
      Oh also its rather cathartic to scream "you fuckhead"

      Delete
    18. Hang on, vaccines cause homosexuality and autism? K but I’m vaccinated and neither of those things. Am I doing something wrong?

      I’ve also heard that gay people and autistic people breathe in oxygen. If there’s a correlation between inhaling oxygen and being gay and/or autistic then that’s a risk I don’t want to take!!

      Delete
    19. Also Sarah everyone who has ever breathed oxygen has a 100% mortality rate. Poor bastards.

      Delete
  6. Fix for #62 "polio virus image" link not working.

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  7. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  8. Wow, thank you! (Not sure if those who need to read this actually will though.)

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  9. Impressive, thank you! Maybe I missed it somewhere above, but one of the common concerns I hear is that vaccines are just a big money grab for the manufacturers. Thusly, they are the ones pushing the CDC, etc. to force all of these shots onto all of our children.

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    Replies
    1. It is a big money grab for big pharma. Even doc owns big pharma stocks so he has to protect his interest.

      Delete
    2. I work in an Emergency Department. Couldn't even venture to guess how many doses of Tdap I've administered over the years, but I can tell you exactly how much it has affected my bottom line - not at all. I've heard this one a lot from the anti-vax crowd, it's dumb.

      Delete
    3. Irrelevant.

      Delete
    4. dose of flu vaccine: $10.00
      course of tamiflu: $1,000.00
      even at a 40% effectiveness rate, that's still a $970.00 loss for every three doses of vaccine.

      Delete
    5. Yeah such a big money grab, that clinics give shots away for free to the poor low income no insurance families.. Free is a hefty price, I had to mortgage my house to afford the pricetag of free..
      I broke my eyes rolling them, I have now strained my eyeball muscles rolling them for I don't know, the 1000th eyeroll at some of these Anons..

      Delete
    6. Yes. They get kickbacks for every flu shot the give. That is why they are practically beating our door down trying to get us to come get one. I have gotten them some years and others not, but the money part is true. We the taxpayers are funding those "free" flu shots.

      Delete
    7. "Beating our door down"? I get more of that from religious people than medical people. :)

      But seriously, you seem to have a hold of some facts. Could you please share them with us, along with a reliable source for them? After all, we all read DocBastard's blog post, and everything he claims is backed up by a number of reliable medical and scientific sources which he shares.

      In that spirit, could you please share the source of those "kickbacks" they get for every flu shot? How do you know it's "true"?

      The thought occurs that if they ARE beating your door down it might be because they don't want you to get sick, on the general basis that medicine is based around that concept, and that if too many people get sick at the same time it might lead to an epidemic which might adversely very many things. But yeah, this is just conjecture, based on things like the hippocratic oath, the price of vaccines vs the price of the medication, and knowing how an epidemic can, off the top of the head, negatively impact tourism and working ability of the resident population which strikes an immediate economical blow. Nothing concrete, you see.

      Delete
    8. so now big pharma is paying doctors to sell vaccines for ten dollars a dose... because that makes it profitable for big pharma?

      think how rich they would be if they weren't really really bad at business.

      Delete
  10. Re #10
    "I know you think citing MTHFR makes you look smart, but it has the exact opposite effect."

    Indeed. I encountered such a smart guy a few months ago in some comment section. He even gave a citation toward a scientific study about this polymorphism.
    Just reading the abstract of the article was enough to see the article wasn't supporting his views in any way. In the conclusion, the authors were advising pregnant women with one polymorphism type to have more folic acid in their diet, IIRC.
    Not a word about autism, vaccination, or ponies. It was disappointing.

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  11. paralaxvu@sbcglobal.net29 March 2019 at 22:44

    I can't wait for the next time one of the rabid antivaxxers on my local community chit chat page speaks up again. And they will, of course. Of course, they also won't read your blog when I post it, either because they have a 10-second attention span, they can't read, or they're too busy listening to Jenny McCarthy. But that's ok, others will read it, copy it, and plop it down on their own community's chit chat page. Thank you so very much!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jenny is afraid of vaccines, but has no problem at all with silicone.

      Delete
    2. Ken..

      Or VD, seriously..
      Jim Carrey supposedly tested positive for:
      erpes I and II; Gonorrhea; Chlamydia; and Genital Warts?
      After his relationship with Jenny, you kind have to wonder what all they were sharing outside of bunk science and scaring the public with their antivax BS..
      She went on to cry about doing a kissing scene with Sheen and how stupid she is to how HIV is spread..

      Delete
    3. an expression I picked up in college: "don't touch it, you know where it's been."

      Delete
  12. This is probably the most comprehensive thing I've seen on vaccines. Thank you!

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  13. Thank you. This was educating and interesting. I'm going to send it to my daughter who's pro/vaccine and is not afraid to say it.
    I asked our doctor to skip the pertussis component of the DTP when my son was getting his vaccines because he had such a bad reaction. 11 years later he got whooping cough. I would never want anyone to go through what we went through.

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  14. This is one of those pages that should be preserved for all posterity and instantly come up or be referenced whenever anyone expressed any sort of disquiet over vaccination. Wonderfully documented, excellently written as always. If you took out some of your frustrauted jabs at the antivaxxers it could (should!) be on every major medical paper and website on the planet. But if you DID take those jabs out, it wouldn't be really a DocBastard thing, and I like DocBastard just the way he is. :)

    I wish this post went viral. Insert pun as you see fit.

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  15. The majority of vaccine pushers are foreigners with financialinterest in the vaccine trade.

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    Replies
    1. Back that with evidence. While you're at it, define 'foreigners'. Foregn to where?

      Delete
  16. The one I didn't see that I get is "But why are there no double blind placebo studies?". Love this list!!

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  17. With regards to #15, I created (though I admit I may not have been the first) an analogy about it. If I take an Olympic level swimmer, and throw them into the middle of the ocean, do you suppose they'll make it to shore safely? Probably not. It's the same with a person's immune system. The vaccine trains it to fight off infections, but if everyone around is contagious with that disease, the person's immune system will still be swamped, and unable to fight it off.

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    Replies
    1. I don't think that's a good analogy. It sounds like the immune system isn't strong enough and cannot cope with the number of attacks.

      Herd immunity doesn't rely on the strength of the immune system. It relies on the immune system having nothing to do.

      Imagine, every time you meet someone you both take a single coin out of your pockets. If you both produce the same coin (penny, nickel, dime, etc) then you are safe; if the coins are different then the infection is passed on [assuming the other person is infected]. With the first person you meet you may be lucky (same coins), but as you meet more and more people the likelihood of being lucky every time gets smaller and smaller.

      It only requires one person to be infected, then it will be passed on to almost everyone they meet. And then most people they in turn meet. Very soon everyone is infected.

      Now imagine that people are asked to empty their pockets. When you meet someone they have no coins so the coins can't be different and you're safe.

      But, suppose some people can't (or won't) empty their pockets ... perhaps one person in every ten. When you meet someone there's a 90% chance that they don't have any coins and you're safe. But 10% of the time they'll have some coins; you may draw the same coins and stay safe or you draw different coins and any infection passed on.

      When the first person is infect, there's a chance that everyone they meet has empty pockets and the infection goes no further. Or they may meet a few people with coins and the infection is passed on. These infected people may not meet anyone with coins and the infection comes to a halt. But if too many people still have coins the infection will continue to spread.

      In this example, emptying your pockets is like being vaccinated ... you can't get infected, you can't pass on an infection. If everyone has emptied their pockets an infection cannot spread and comes to a halt. If some people still have coins (aren't vaccinated) then the infection can spread. Whether it spreads or is contained depends on how many people still have coins (aren't vaccinated) ... only a few an the infection is contained, too many and it spreads.

      In the real world, some people cannot be vaccinated (too young or immunocompromised). And the vaccination may be less than 100% effective.

      Delete
  18. MTHFKR clearly stands for Motherfucker doc
    Also its been shown that unvaccinated children are less likely to be diagnosed with autism. Because autism doesnt typically start showing symptoms until the age of 4 and they never make it that far.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. https://www.nichd.nih.gov/health/topics/autism/conditioninfo/symptoms-appear

      Do some research before you blither.

      Delete
    2. This was simply a bit of hyperbole, Jean.

      Delete
    3. Autism shows up before 4, it is recognising it that doesn't always happen, and didn't happen at all years ago.
      Autistic children would be though of as odd.

      Delete
  19. a few more things:
    I claim source credit for "plague brats" feel free to use it, though.

    there should be #4: you have Doc Bastard bookmarked and regularly cite his compiliations of vaccine myth debunkage.

    I don't remember having chicken pox - my brain has mercifully blocked all memory except I remember that I was fucking miserable.

    I know people who have had many of those old diseases.

    yes, vaccines can cause side effects. but the diseases the vaccines are intended to prevent cause ALL THE SAME SIDE EFFECTS ONLY MUCH WORSE, AND AT A MUCH HIGHER RATE OF INCIDENCE.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I bet you all have PhDs in immunology and molecular biology. If you don't then shut the fuck up. You know nothing about science like I do.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Who even *are* you? Another "anon"? Which one of the various "anons" replying here even ARE you?

      You can hide behind anonimity or you can stand up, proclaim your views and professed experience, and take the blows, like DocBastard does (using a steady alias for years is NOT the same as anonimity). You don't get to do both.

      If you ARE the same "anon" that has been peppering this place with stupid bullshit, I've just fed a troll. Ah well. Trolls are a good thing. They're the things we point at children and say "See, if you don't analyze data objectively, learn to think for yourself, and aren't respectful of other people's views and/or creeds, you're going to grow up to be an asshole like this." So feeding them occasionally is good.

      Delete
    2. google U is not an accredited medical school.

      Delete
    3. Oh i do have a phd in immunology. Ive dated supermodels and personally know a nobel prize winner.
      2 are lies only 1 is truth. Guess which one is the truth?
      Its easy to claim you have any sort of experience or training. You havent even given us any evidence you have even the slightest idea what any of this means. Much less have a PHD

      Delete
    4. No suchthing as PHD moron.

      Delete
    5. "I bet you all have PhDs in immunology and molecular biology."

      As a matter of fact, I do. Well, close enough.

      Delete
  21. Typo: In 29, "availability" should be "available"

    ReplyDelete
  22. I wonder if i were to hand a antivaxxer a pistol with the safety on and tell them to put the gun up to their head and pull the trigger, but there was a 5% chance the safety wouldnt work, if they would turn off the safety and do it anyways?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Big pharma is already doing that to children.

      Delete
    2. Really? Do tell, Anon. Come on, don’t leave us shivering with antici...pation.

      Delete
    3. I see what you did, there.

      Delete
    4. Lol DocBastard never took you as as a fan.. I laughed out loud and that's been very hard to do lately..

      Delete
    5. I don't know about that analogy.
      - The risks of death from vaccines is faaaar less than 5%
      - When you put the gun to your head, you don't expect an added benefit far outweigthing the risks (like protection against diseases).

      Delete
    6. LouVeha i dont know about you, but death im pretty sure is the Best protection against diseases. Just ask the antivaxxers about how not sick their dead kids are!

      Delete
  23. Sunscreen doesn't cause cancer? No issue with people thinking since they have sunscreen on it's safe and thus incurring more sun exposure than they otherwise would?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. that argument holds as much water as claiming spring break causes alcohol poisoning.

      Delete
    2. Actually, the concern is that too much sunscreen too often blocks the formation of Vitamin D which protects against skin cancer.

      Delete
    3. da google says this: "Background. Vitamin D is formed in the skin at exposure to the sun. The body also obtains vitamin D through foods and dietary supplements. Some studies suggest that vitamin D may help prevent certain types of cancer, but it is not clear whether it may help prevent skin cancer."

      in addition, most modern people get their vitamin D from milk or other upplements. and the most common trigger for skin cancer is exposure to the sun with inadequate sunscreen.

      Delete
  24. I was vaccinated in the 70s 1 dose MMR and was unfortunate the have both the mumps, and the measles, both suck and why anyone would want someone to suffer through either is beyond me. I love my children, they are both fully vaccinated. Great article.

    ReplyDelete
  25. the only memory I have of mumps is my doctor telling my mother I had it. I trust my lack of memory to tell me I was miserable.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Thank you, fellow Doc, for a damn good post!

    ReplyDelete
  27. "I got the flu shot and I still got the flu!"

    What the hell do you think the shot does? It doesn't put an impenetrable force field around your body that prevents the virus getting in. Nothing can stop it getting into your body. But if and when it does get in, a flu shot will have prepared your immune system so that the symptoms are reduced, the length of time is reduced, and therefore the risk of transmission is reduced. And if you had a nasty flu, just think about how much worse it would have been with an unprepared immune system.

    Dave Bailey, aka The Rat

    ReplyDelete
  28. Love you!!! This is so hilarious and so accurate it must be so painful for those less endowed in the brain area (ie anti-vaxxers). For your safety I am so glad you’re anonymous!

    ReplyDelete
  29. Tetanus boosters hurt like hell, only time whining was permitted in my house for two days straight by everyone. All mine whined, husband, adult brother, adult daughter, my two youngest, and myself.
    My daughter had a reaction to her DPT and they had to break it apart and give her two shots in one leg and the other in the other leg to narrow down which one caused the first reaction.. She had swelling of the thigh, inflammation and hardening of the surrounding area we had to have her leg ice/heat pack rotated for a week.. Second dose gave them an idea what was going on.. I would rather have a minor owie than a dead daughter watching her suffer from a preventable possible death sentence..

    ReplyDelete
  30. I had an antvaxxer send me a couple of videos and an article about herd immunity after I posted the Burkina Faso study on her stupid “herd immunity is a myth” meme. The videos and article claim that our society has never actually reached the required thresholds for herd immunity (90-95% for measles) because many adults have not kept up with boosters. A CDC study was quoted that we’ve only reached about 60% ever. How do you respond to that? Thanks for the information.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "people not getting vaccinated won't fix that problem."

      Delete
    2. I think if all society had reached actual herd immunity levels, several of these diseases would have gone the way of smallpox. I do still have hope.

      Delete
    3. https://www.who.int/csr/disease/smallpox/faq/en/

      However, with this latest measles outbreak, I fear even smallpox can come back again. F*cking anti-vaxxers

      Delete
    4. Small pox was actually eradicated in the wild. The fear is that a similar virus will mutate back into small pox basically

      Delete
  31. regarding gardasil and infertility: guess what cervical cancer does to your fertility.
    and then of course, thare's the chance that avoiding gardasil sticks you with these five:
    Cisplatin.
    Carboplatin.
    Paclitaxel (Taxol®),
    Topotecan.
    Gemcitabine (Gemzar®)

    ReplyDelete
  32. meanwhile, in the New York Orthodox Jewish Nurse community:
    http://gothamist.com/2019/03/26/orthodox_jewish_nurses_vaccines.php
    (it's good news, except for Anon)

    ReplyDelete
  33. WOW. Thankseverso for putting this together, Doc. You really outdid yourself! Now if I can just get the anti-vaxxer idiots to click the link & actually read this info.

    ReplyDelete
  34. Absolute BEST article I have read on this topic yet! Could actually be a book if you have the time and energy to work on it (and I hope you do). Also (not that it's necessary) but I wonder if putting in something about mumps causing male sterility might freak them out a bit? Because you know how some of those anti-vaxxers like to have loads of kids.
    Anyway thank you so much for writing this amazing article and I've already posted to my professional page (I'm a doctor).

    ReplyDelete
  35. Our office has a few parents declining vaccines because they supposedly contain "Neanderthal DNA". Yes, I am completely serious, and yes I had to try very hard to not laugh when my coworker first told me about this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The only thing funnier than that would be a claim that they contain aborted Neanderthal fetal tissue.

      Delete
    2. a significant part of the world population apparently contains neanerthal DNA. it doesn't make people any more likely to have a bad reaction to vaccines.

      Delete
    3. Hey, if the vaccines "supposedly" contain that DNA and a significant part of the world "apparently" also does, what's the compatibility problem? :)

      j/k

      PS - Dunno about the DNA, but too many of us sure ACT that way on a daily basis...

      Delete
    4. umm... I was suggesting I understood that to mean the parents contained the DNA, not the vaccines, but carry on.

      Delete
    5. Unless you are a native african tribesman you have some amount of neanderthal DNA. They dont as theyre ancestors never went into europe

      Delete
  36. One argument I keep seeing, but did not see addressed above. "Why I should I trust scientists? They lied about lead, asbestos, and tobacco. These "facts" about vaccines must be lies too."

    ReplyDelete
  37. Thank you so much for this superb article. I'm bookmarking it as a reference in case I have an opportunity to confront my anti-vax daughter. I almost died as a four-year old from measles. Ministers were called in to pray because they felt sure I was dying. But, here I am, and I don't use being a survivor as an argument against vaccines. Thank you again for all the work you put into this.

    ReplyDelete
  38. This pediatrician in Oregon thanks you VERY MUCH. This is the most comprehensive and readable refutation of antivax arguments I have ever seen! I have already shared and will keep this in my reference file for future use. Excellent!

    ReplyDelete
  39. Dear Doc.
    I'm one of your loyal followers. First thanks for all the good work you're doing in the face of the insane conspiracy theorists and second thanks for building this valuable source of evidence. Sadly these conspiracy theorists cannot be educated out of their delusional state but at least you will be slowing the rate at which they recruit the naive and the gullible. I'm a clinical scientist and have faced similar problems fighting off the cancer quacks.
    More strength to your elbow,
    Mike Baum
    Prof Emeritus of surgery and visiting prof of medical humanities
    UCL

    ReplyDelete
  40. one minor correction - mutagenicity and carcinogenicity preclinical toxicology studies are rarely, if ever, done on vaccines. They are sometimes done on adjuvants that are small molecules and process residuals that haven't previously been tested, but not on the vaccines themselves.
    We rarely do this testing on any large molecules because they are unlikely to interact with DNA.
    Our studies of tox hyperimmunize the animals and include a ton of clinical and microscopic pathology to see tiny changes. We also do studies with pregnant animals and see how their pups develop. Fine, in case you were wondering.
    WHO has a great document describing the recommended nonclinical safety testing of vaccines: https://www.who.int/biologicals/vaccines/nonclinial_evaluation_of_vaccines/en/

    ReplyDelete
  41. “No vaccine-preventable disease is anywhere close to 100% fatal“
    Please add (Except rabies, that shit is almost always 100% fatal without the vaccine”.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Theres only ever been 2 people who were known to survive without the vaccine, and they didnt get it simply due to it being to late. Somehow the doctors managed to keep them alive and 1 made a Mostly full recovery (save some mental issues. Some, but still). Both within the past 10 years. Its actually rather interesting to read about.

      Delete
  42. Lots of valid points here. If this article were written in a tone that was respectful and less condescending, I might share it with my friends who are anti-vaccine. If your intention is to persuade others who think differently, this won't cut it. This will only put them on the defensive. If your intention was to mock and condescend and entertain pro-vaxxers, mission accomplished.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. antivaxxers won't listen, anyway, so why bother pretending to care about their feelings.

      Delete
    2. Wow! That's quite a generalization. Then why bother going through all this trouble to write such an article? What was the intention? I ask sincerely. The only objective I can think of is to get pats on your back from the choir to whom you're preaching with no intention of making a difference.

      Delete
    3. because there are people coming in from the outside every year, and they need to know just how stupid the entire antivaxx movement really is, and how ridiculously false their arguments are. and further, that people are willing to call them out for the dangerous idiots they are.
      it's the old equation - you will never persuade the true believers, but you can show their audience how dangerously delusional they actually are.

      Delete
    4. Unknown - I kinda agree with you. But, this is DocBastard's style, and its his frustration with the whole issue that's seeping through. I agree that things written in this one are more likely to piss off than educate... but you know, anti-vaxxers are doing humanity a HUGE disservice. Sweet-talking and proper attempts at educating clearly didn't work, because there are none so blind as those who decide not to see...

      (I don't mean people who are confused about the whole thing because AntiV are so vocal, I mean the actual AntiV people who really believe this crazy talk)

      ...and given that, DocBastard's attempt is worth trying, I guess. I mean, it may even work, because those Anti-vaxxers who can still think for themselves may be so irate at the blog post that they'll actively look for ways to disprove everything DocBastard said. That may prove educational!

      If you DO share this article, you probably should do so with the caveat that DocBastard is very blunt about his opinions, though he uses facts rather than conjecture to prop them up, and that there are some things he has zero pacience with. One of them is not using seatbelts or helmets, because he sees the results first-hand practically every day. The other one is anti-vaxx, which, when you think about it, is pretty much the same thing as being anti-seatbelt; just as silly, just as dangerous, just as misguided.

      And this blog post is also a result of being in the middle of AntiVaxx discussions where you can BET the AntiVax party was condescending and disrespectful; the instances I find of it online are telling.

      So DocBastard is giving it back. He must figure they can take it, since they dish it out so, but he actually uses facts.

      TL;DR: If your friends are merely on the fence about AntiVaxx, don't show them the article but paraphrase the relevant points. If they're hell-bent on it, just link them the article, because maybe someone needs to tell it like this, considering the damage they're trying to do to humanity's health.

      Delete
    5. Pfff. Above was from Peter Piers. This comment section is tricky sometimes... plus the captcha is aaaaannnOOOOOOOYing...

      Delete
  43. Thanks for a well put together and entertaining article. There is a 4th category of readers, those seeing this thrown towards some antivax adepts (I'm being nice tonight) and deciding to check out the source, cause science can be fun :)

    The article has some side effects, started reading at 1am and its now 2:30am so I think I should report sleeping disorder to the VAERS database (hey, I did get my DTP shot a few days ago so its related :) )

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Same here. Found a link to this as a reply to some moronic argument on Facebook and lost a couple of hours. Time to pay that forward.

      Delete
  44. Interesting, you only have this one post in your blog. Which big pharma company is paying you?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. that's hilarious to those of us who have been following his blog for years. the menu is on the right.

      Delete
    2. That's pretty much the sort of quick-reaction, instantaneous blind bias and zero research one would expect from an anti-vaxxer. Yes, the people who are advocating anti-vaxxing ARE the sort of people who fail to notice years of blog posts and immediately make accusations about Big Pharma.

      Seriously. Perfect illustration right here.

      Delete
    3. Pfff. Above was from Peter Piers. This comment section is tricky sometimes... plus the captcha is aaaaannnOOOOOOOYing...

      Delete
    4. there must be something in your anti spam/popup/virus/tracking suite that is interfering. I haven't seen the captcha in months.

      Delete
    5. Anon - What is truly interesting is that I have 459 published blog posts dating back to 13 October, 2011. I suppose you missed the other 458 of them.

      Delete
    6. I think its due to the formatting on mobile. It separated this one onto its own page for the wider list of articles for some reason. Easy to hit "next page"

      Delete
  45. Press on the arrow, he has years on content on here. This one is just pinned to the front

    ReplyDelete
  46. Docbastard, you have no background in immunology nor medical training in pathophysiology like I do I suggest you shut the fuck up.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You have 0 evidence you even know what any of these articles even say, much less any medical training beyond how to apply a bandaid.

      Delete
    2. google-U is not an accredited medical school.

      Delete
    3. Conner, the proper term is "adhesive bandage/dressing." Band-Aid is Johnson & Johnson's brand name for such medical adhesives.

      Delete
    4. common usage rules apply.

      Delete
    5. Anon, instead of throwing around your supposed credentials, perhaps you can try pointing out any mistakes that I made. Surely someone with extensive education and training in immunology and pathophysiology such as yourself can indicate mistakes rather than just suggesting that I shut the fuck up.

      I'll wait right here.

      Delete
  47. Thank you for this, Doctor. Here's a 31 point AV screed that's making the rounds on twitter and (as screenshots) on FB. Posted 7:32 AM - 31 Mar 2019.

    Safe & Effective


     

    What the media doesn't want you to know about why people choose to not vaccinate their children: a thread.

    1. Parents who exercise their right to refuse vaccines care deeply about their children. This decision is not made in ignorance, nor out of fear.


    2. They are tired of the talking points and official pronouncements, unsupported by sound science. These parents no longer consider the Centers for Disease Control, the American Academy of Pediatrics, or the US Federal Drug Administration to be reliable sources of information.


    3. These institutions, along with the Institute of Medicine and the WHO, are front groups, controlled by pharmaceutical companies. These institutions promote vaccination policies while presenting themselves as independent, authoritative sources on vaccine safety.


    4. By controlling these institutions, the pharmaceutical industry has gained control of vaccine safety assessments and uses that power to rule out causal relationships between vaccination and serious adverse events. Further, the CDC holds over 30 patents on vaccine technology.

    5. While it takes more than a single patent to have the right to manufacture a vaccine, the CDC has an undeniable conflict of interest with regard to vaccine safety.

    6. Parents for vaccine choice know that vaccine manufacturers and government agencies do not perform long-term safety studies. They know that industry studies are terminated after a few days or few weeks, long before chronic illness manifests in a child.

    7. They know that vaccine studies have rarely used an inert placebo, and instead use an aluminum injection or another vaccine as the control. This ensures that any new adverse events are similar to the placebo.


    8. These parents don’t want to inject their children with aluminum adjuvants, some of which were created in manufacturing errors that weren’t discovered for 2 decades. Independent research has discovered alarming amounts of viral, animal, and human DNA contamination in vaccines.

    9. Vaccine choice parents know that the large meta-analysis autism studies that declare vaccines to be safe have been seriously compromised. The children who are labeled “unvaccinated” in these studies are not actually unvaccinated.

    10. Thousands of children who would be expected to have autism diagnoses are mysteriously, and inexplicably, missing from their numbers. User bias is ignored, where parents of medically fragile children opt not to vaccinate.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 11. These studies use baseless, and often fraudulent, confounding factors to eliminate healthy children from consideration and influence their final statistical outcomes.

      12. Parents who have opted not to vaccinate report that their children have far lower incidences of asthma, anaphylactic food allergies, Type 1 diabetes, epilepsy, and neurological disorders such as autism.


13. These parents have waited decades for the government to perform a true comparison of the long-term health of vaccinated children against unvaccinated, but the study never comes.

      14. They say it would be unethical to perform such a study that would deprive infants of life-saving vaccines. This claim ignores the health records of hundreds of thousands of unvaccinated children in state healthcare and insurance databases across America, available for study.

      15. Americans do not have the “right” to live in a germ-free environment beyond what they can create on their own property. There is no “right” to be free from diseases that vaccines claim, but often fail, to prevent.

      16. Nowhere on a vaccine insert does it say that the vaccine will not work unless 95% of the surrounding population also takes the vaccine.

      17. The theory of herd immunity is not nearly as solid as public health officials would have you believe. The idea was put forward in 1933 when a researcher observed that measles outbreaks temporarily decreased after 68% of children contracted the measles virus.

      18. This is why measles outbreaks historically appeared in 3 to 4-year cycles.

      19. This phenomenon was unrelated to the measles vaccine, which wasn’t invented at the time. 7% of people don’t create antibodies after measles vaccination, and another 25% lose their antibodies after 15 years.

      20. 39% of all measles cases in the US in 2015 were caused by the MMR vaccine, including 25% of the Disneyland outbreak, but the CDC never published their data.

      Delete
    2. 21. Vaccines for pertussis, diphtheria, and polio are symptom-reducing vaccines and not designed to stop transmission of infection to another person. Tetanus is not contagious. Hepatitis B is a blood-borne virus, highly unlikely to spread in a community setting.

      22. Use of the Hib vaccine has led to infections with a bacterial strain we don’t vaccinate for. The CDC knew in 2013 that the pertussis bacteria mutated and isn’t a match for the vaccine, but didn’t tell the public until this year.

      23. The CDC has also known that using the pertussis vaccine makes people more likely to become infected with the mutated pertussis bacteria.

      24. Mumps outbreaks in 100% vaccinated groups, like a navy ship out to sea, are most likely due to vaccine adverse events and fraudulent efficacy claims.

      25. Children vaccinated for these diseases don’t contribute to “herd immunity.” It is baseless to conflate naturally-acquired lifelong immunity with vaccine-induced antibody production.

      26. We hear that “all children must be vaccinated in order to protect the children who can’t be vaccinated.” This is a strawman argument. There is no condition for which the CDC declares that a child cannot receive a whooping cough vaccine.

      27. Children undergoing chemo can receive every vaccine but the MMR and chickenpox, which they receive when they are in remission. Children who receive transplanted organs must be fully vaccinated in order to be waitlisted.

      28. No one has an obligation to vaccinate their children in order to protect the most medically vulnerable among us.

      29. Congress removed civil liability for death and injury from vaccine manufacturers in 1986 and created the court where parents must chase financial compensation for their injured children. Congress did this while deeming vaccines to be “unavoidably unsafe.”

      30. This phrase means that it is not possible to make vaccines any less dangerous than they were in 1986, even if they are properly manufactured and come with proper warnings.

      31. It is unconscionable for lawmakers, doctors, schools, or the general public to expect parents to vaccinate their children with an unavoidably unsafe product in a scientifically unfounded attempt to protect someone else’s child.
      . 

/End/


      Delete
    3. 1: yes, they are made out of ignorance and fear.
      2-31: see 1.

      Delete
    4. I believe that Liz Ditz is proof that failing to vaccinate shrinks the brain!

      Delete
    5. Anon - Liz is an extremely vocal advocate in favour of vaccines. She was merely listing the complaints she saw on Twitter and Facebook. I believe I have addressed all of them except the "unavoidably unsafe" one, which I will have to add.

      Delete
    6. you know what else is unavoidably unsafe? life.

      Delete
    7. "28. No one has an obligation to vaccinate their children in order to protect the most medically vulnerable among us." This one is exceptionally cold-blooded.

      Delete
  48. Thank you Doc!! This is a perfect summary to go with your Gish Gallop articles. I now have two links saved: one for disputing the "research" proving their opinion, and one for responding to the massive disinformation (with no supplied evidence).

    While i can see a "niceified" version of this as useful, I personally prefer your style. Might have something to do with why I keep reading! Keep up the good work; maybe this stupidity will fall by the wayside in my lifetime...

    ReplyDelete
  49. I heard a new one today, similar to #21 on Liz Ditz's list.
    Apparently, you can be over-vaccinated. Booster shots just mask the disease, and you continue to shed the disease, increasing the chance of infection.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's a new one. I've never seen that claim.

      Delete
  50. Add me to the list of people vividly remembering chicken pox - I even have a distinct scar on my temple to remind me because I DID scratch. I was told not to, of course, but I just couldn't Not Scratch. It was horrible, I am very glad there is now a vaccine, and if I ever end up having kids, I'll make sure they get that shot instead of the pox.

    Yeah, needles are scary, but they hurt way less and leave much smaller scars, if any.

    I myself am fully up to date on my shots. I'm almost never truly ill, and if I do catch something I recover extremly fast.

    Though in all fairness I do have to admit I suffer from allergies and high-functional autism. Gotta say though, being autistic wouldn't actually be a bad thing at all if people were more accepting of it - I'm not sick or underdeveloped, I just have a different skillset than most people.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've had the "this is what you don't do to a person on the autism spectrum who is in crisis" training. the basics of acceptance aren't that hard to understand, and it actually makes good sense to apply some of the "don't overwhelm them with stimuli" concepts to anybody in crisis.

      Delete
    2. I'm Autistic as well, as is my son, neither of us had MMR vaccine, too old, I agree, we are both nice enough people, it's a pity that some people just cannot accept differences in others.

      Delete
  51. DocBastard, thank you for this fabulous compilation and illustration of characteristic anti-vaccine "logic." While I greatly admire your sense of humor and your ability to cut through obfuscation and lay bare the misunderstanding or hypocrisy at the center of each anti-vaccine argument, I find your criticisms of Rudolf Steiner, and to a lesser extent anthroposophic medicine, to be weak and uninformed. (These criticisms occur under "53) Measles protects against cancer" and are incidental to your rebuttal of that myth.)

    You claim Steiner believed ‘1) that the sex of a baby was determined at conception by the alignment of the stars, and 2) that the heart was not actually a pump, but that instead blood circulates via its own "biological momentum".’

    Your first claim has no citation and seems dubious — for all of Steiner’s far-out ideas, he had scientific training and tended to keep up with and respect contemporary scientific findings (as far as they went), while also believing that the scientific method was usually applied in a needlessly restricted way and could be extended through rigorous meditative work. Whether and to what extent these latter beliefs may have merit is a question still being debated by, among others, those philosophers and scholars of esotericism who have lately begun to take a serious interest in this long-neglected work. Speculation by non-experts in these matters is about as unreliable as lay speculation about toxicology, immunology, and epidemiology. Dunning-Kruger applies to all of us.

    Your second claim has a citation, but you don't bother even trying to rebut the cited argument for an alternative model of blood circulation and heart function which, while unconventional, may sound plausible to a lay person (especially if they peruse the article rather than just chuckling at the term “biological momentum”). One of the article’s authors, Branko Furst, is an anesthesiologist who has written an academic book on the subject — The Heart and Circulation: An Integrative Model (Springer, 2014) — and whose review of circulation models and their respective histories and limitations seems to have contributed to a lively discussion on these topics, evidenced in PubMed. I’m personally unqualified to evaluate these arguments, but to blithely dismiss them as stemming from Steiner’s purported inability to “understand concepts as (relatively) simple as…the circulatory system” is not very convincing.

    [...continued below...]

    ReplyDelete
  52. [...continued from above...]

    Of anthroposophic medicine in general, you state “[AM is] an alternative practice based on occult bullshit, risible bullshit, homeopathic bullshit, and other assorted bullshit.” While partially true, this is misleading first because AM “practitioners,” as you prefer to call them, are in fact conventionally-licensed doctors with conventional training and conventional practices, which are not based on but supplemented with the things you call bullshit. It is also misleading because it conflates AM’s epistemological foundations with its tradition. A recent academic work which tries to clarify the former, while not defending the latter (which I would agree contains bullshit), is Anthroposophy and Science: An Introduction by Peter Heusser (Peter Lang, 2016). Steiner began his career as a philosopher, and in his later lectures frequently referenced his early epistemological writings, which most of his followers even then neglected, and which Steiner himself predicted would outlast all his other works. Steiner also, as Heusser emphasizes, expected his recommendations to be scientifically tested (and modified or rejected as necessary), not accepted or defended on faith.

    Why do I care whether your “Busting Vaccine Myths” article misrepresents the apparently tangential topics of anthroposophic medicine and Rudolf Steiner? Because, as I’m sure you know, Steiner/Waldorf schools and communities have become a haven for vaccine-preventable diseases and their allies, humans who embrace “bullshit argument[s] about vaccines”: the #3 audience you identify at the top of your article. And if your calculation of “at least a 99.21% chance…that [those readers] haven't even read this far” is even a little bit off, there’s a good chance some Steiner-admiring folks, misinformed about vaccines (as many of them are), are going to encounter your article. Among this group, those who are are able and willing to think clearly and to change their minds in light of new evidence and convincing arguments may read all the way to Myth #53, at which point they may find your criticisms of anthroposophic medicine and Steiner to be weak and uninformed, and on that basis question your credibility and the reliability of your pro-vaccine arguments. (“Steiner said X, Y, and Z about vaccines, and you’ve shown you don’t understand Steiner — heck, you can’t even acknowledge the possibility that the heart might be more than just a mechanical pump — so why should I take you seriously? I’m going to continue assuming that Steiner may have been right about vaccines, even though we can’t yet prove it. Scientists can be so rude and closed-minded!” I can just hear the rationalizations clicking.)

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    Replies
    1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthroposophic_medicine

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    2. As for the first claim, it comes from Jean-Marie Abgrall's "Steiner's Heirs".

      As for the heart not being a pump, I have seen it pump. And when it stops pumping, the blood stops circulating. There is no "biological momentum".

      And as for anthroposophic medicine being an extension of conventional medicine, so is "integrative" medicine, which adds bullshit to conventional medicine.

      The bottom line is that the study has never been replicated, so taking a quetionable conclusion from an unreplicated study done by questionable practitioners is simply ludicrous.

      Delete
    3. Thanks for providing that citation. Unfortunately, Abgrall himself provides only one, possibly relevant, secondary citation (in French) for that claim (and all his other claims) about Steiner and anthroposophic medicine (_Healing or Stealing?_, chapter 6):

      https://books.google.com/books?id=kel6_1aN5JwC&pg=PA229

      So I still find that claim questionable (and unrepresentative), I still find your consideration of the heart-model discussion half-hearted (at best) and your "bullshit" broad-brush only partially justified, I still think these weaknesses may harm your credibility among the vaccine hesitant in the Steiner/Waldorf movement, and I still agree with your bottom line about the study and its conclusion.

      Delete
  53. You rocked it, DocB!

    "Well there are a few problems with this: first, who keeps paper data anymore? Data is all digital and backed up repeatedly in multiple locations. If they didn't then they are shoddy researchers who should not be trusted with anything."

    Actually, where I work we do keep lab log books in addition to all the digital back-ups. Plus when you're doing WGTA work, that's all on paper with the exception of digital recordings. I still use paper though (in addition to digital). Paper may crumble to dust after many years (if it doesn't get wet or worse), but digital stuff has to be backed up and updated and it can get lost too. So we cover our asses and protect the public's investment in our research by writing a lot of stuff down too.

    Wednesday

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  54. Sheeples who can't think for themselves.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. you mean the antivaxxers whose blathering is so predictable, of course.

      Delete
    2. You're a YES man. You just have to agree with everything he posts on this site, it's laughable.

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    3. No its called agreeing with scientific evidence and facts versus fearmongering neanderthals like yourself.
      Wait, no sorry neanderthals were actually considered intelligent.
      You are more like an amoeba. Mindless, small insignificant but dangerous to peoples health

      Delete
    4. you call that scientific evidence? bahahaha

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    5. and you're a knee jerk dumbfuck.

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    6. Anon,

      Yeeeeessss. How do you want to call it? Humor us with an "enlightened" answer and then, we'll discuss :D

      Delete
    7. Well, according to Harvard, the interstellar rock Omuamua that has been in orbit around earth is also a spacecraft. Bahahahaha.

      Delete
    8. Ummm...according to Harvard? Right.

      According to Harvard, you failed your IQ test and furthermore, you seem to be proud of that.

      I'll give you another try :D

      Alain

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    9. Those are the scientific evidence that you speak of...sheeples! Bahahahaha. Oh, boy! Too funny! Omuamua is a traveling spacecraft! Bahahahaha! Scientific evidence! Bahahaha.

      Delete
    10. so did you have anything worth taking seriously, or are you just going to babble like a two year old?

      Delete
    11. Omuamua is an alien spacecraft. - Harvard Scientists. Bahahahaha.

      Delete
    12. Anon - which article that I cited do you have a problem with? Please list it along with your specific criticism. Thanks.

      Delete
  55. I got Chicken Pox in the ‘90s, shortly before the vaccine became available. I remember the itching and the oatmeal baths and the general misery.

    The virus also reactivated in my nerves this past December and I got to celebrate Christmas and my birthday with shingles. Three months later I still get the occasional pain through my arm.

    I wouldn’t wish that on anyone. Plus you can get shingles more than once! But there’s a vaccine for shingles too now.

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  56. Great read. Just one question. Since vaccines are injected into the muscle how is the liver able to help filter out toxins? Or does it all just accumulate? Thanks for your time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Forgot to "check notify me"

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    2. there's this juice in your body called "blood"...

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    3. Lol. I know. And the lymphatic system. But it still seems like it bypasses the filtration system. I read the whole thing waiting for the injection vs ingestion explanation.

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    4. your digestive system doesn't go through your liver or kidneys, yet alcohol you drink affects both.

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    5. is that a medical opinion? bahahahaah

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    6. nope, it's a long form eyeroll.

      Delete
    7. Brit - first of all, there are no toxins in vaccines. Second, everything that gets into your body that doesn't enter the bloodstream is absorbed via lymphatics which then empties via the thoracic duct into the bloodstream. Nothing is bypassed ever.

      Delete
  57. Thank you! Great read and a fantastic resource. I've bookmarked it ready to deploy on people who will refuse to read it and/or try to understand it.

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  58. best. fucking. source. ever.

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  59. Don't confuse correlation with causation. In this case, rather than failure to vaccinate causing brain shrinkage, it's probably more likely brain shrinkage that causes a failure to vaccinate.

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  60. It can be argued effectively that we know autism existed prior to 1848, in approximately the same ratio that it exists today.

    Estimate in this article puts the number at 1,200, and that only includes probably 1 in 3 cases(since the vast majority still went undetected then), and that's in Massachusetts alone. Cross reference that with U.S. Census numbers for Massachusetts population for 1840 and 1850.

    1848 predates all modern vaccines. The only one in use at the time was smallpox, which is just a prick of the skin with a little trident shaped needle, which has been previously dipped in cowpox, essentially. It contains no adjuvants, and is not injected.

    Autism most certainly is not caused by vaccines.

    https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/early-history-autism-america-180957684/

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  61. Awesome! Thanks so much for all this work, and for sharing.
    Could you do two more please? One about flat earth, and one about debunking majijuana myths :)

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    Replies
    1. Two issues that I see: a. Flat Earth is not a medical issue. Doc tends to write regarding the (mostly) medical issues he encounters or cares about. b. Medical marijuana research has found reproducible effects for a few specific conditions. Though there are a ton of anecdotal reports, very little reproducible work has been done.

      Delete
  62. When I was very young, I had an older sister who was 11 years my senior. She had some serious health issues, and they didn't quite pin point what exactly was wrong. She had horrible rashes that they treated with tar and plastic bags on her arms and legs. This was back in the 60's. When the schools were vaccinating against small pox, me and siblings could not have that vaccine. The doctors had told my parents that the small pox vaccine could possibly kill my sister and even the scab from that vaccine on one of us, would also endanger her health. I don't know how true that would prove out to be, I just know we siblings could not have that vaccine.

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  63. Er... As a member of a Dutch Reformed variant church, I've never even heard of the divine providence objection. And I vaccinate my kids.

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  64. AGREE with your stance, as it of course the only logical one. We have some famous boxer here in Australia today saying vaccines are unsafe, it just beggars belief.

    BTW - I have spent the past month reading your blog from the beginning. Very entertaining reading.

    Janney

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    Replies
    1. Well janney, welcome to the docbastard family...community...mental health ward whatever we would call ourselves

      Delete
  65. You should add the Bullshit the Anti Vaxxers have been spewing about Stanley Plotkin and how he recused himself from a trial and apparently wasn't able to cite any safety (which is a lie )and this proves he's "covering " something up .

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  66. To your quote about the ethics of vaccine vs non vaccine studies generally the Anti Vaxers will counter with

    1. "It's more unethical to use untested vaccines " showing their warped morality and hypocrisy .

    2. "Just used already unvaccinated children" i think this explains itself

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  67. What you have written about the safety of aluminum is in direct contradiction to the reply o have received from the European Medicine Agency.

    They confirmed that no toxicokinetic studies have ever been done to access the safety of injectable aluminum in humans.

    They assume aluminum is safe because it has been used for 6 decades.


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    Replies
    1. Fascinating. Please send their response. Otherwise I can reasonably exclude your claim as unsubstantiated bullshit.

      Delete
  68. As the Brady Bunch demonstrated, America saw the measles as a minor childhood annoyance, not the existential threat vaccine groupies imagine it to be.

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