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Based on what I write, you'd think I was all about vaccines and thoroughly mocking the ignorance of the antivaccination world. And, apparently, I'm paid to do that. Sadly, I do not have a new BMW M5 in my driveway. I'd rather write about evolution, but there's a direct correlation between not vaccinating and harm to children from vaccine preventable diseases, so it seems more important to me than arguing about the stupidity of creationism.

I tend to be the cranky one on the interwebs with respect to vaccines. I'm the mean, angry uncle who turns on the sprinklers when the antivaccine parents walk their dogs in front of my house. Extra benefit–their dogs don't poop on my lawn. See, I'm the curmudgeonly neighbor of the pro-science/pro-vaccine world.

I realize my tone, filled with sarcasm and mockery, may blur my message, which is always based on real science, anti-cherry picking, and appropriately weighing evidence from experts vs. invented data from non-experts. But there are websites, which are important to my own personal mission of understanding vaccines and infectious diseases, that provide the same high value information but without the snark. I know, some of you like snark, as do I.

Here are some of the best websites on the internet that engage in the debate (there's no debate, vaccination is safe and effective, as shown by a couple of mountains worth of evidence) about vaccines. But are on a different planet of niceness compared to me, though still use solid science as evidence of claims.

Voices for Vaccines. This blog (with lots of supporting information) tells personal stories through the voices of those who vaccinate. You cannot helped but be touched by the stories. VacLiars (see, I cannot resist) hates Voices for Vaccines, so there's that. But it's a good place if you're looking for a calm voice in the screaming about vaccines. One of the managers of this website, Karen Ernst, has written a very popular post here. And she was nice. One of the scientific advisory board members (all of whom have impressive credentials in pediatrics and/or infectious diseases) is Paul Offit, who invented a vaccine that saves hundreds of thousands of lives every year. I don't have to say anything more.

Shot of Prevention. One of the older websites that is pro-vaccine (by old, I mean 4 or 5 years), Shot of Prevention focuses on practical parenting issues with regards to vaccinating and diseases. What I love about Shot of Prevention is that its writers come from all walks of life, and really gives the reader a broad perspective on immunization.

Red Wine and Apple Sauce. This website has a different appeal, but it's an outstanding resource for a thoughtful analysis of immunizations. Tara Haelle, who is a science journalist and writes nearly all of the articles, discusses more than just vaccines, but numerous current topics  that are important to parents. She writes long detailed articles, filled with links that support her points, and she should be on anyone's list for getting information about vaccines.

The Value of Vaccination–A Conversation. A relatively new entrant into the conversation about vaccines, Value of Vaccination focuses in a different way–the stories are more personal, with the perspective almost exclusively from the viewpoint of a parent or individual. It features conversations that show us what the value of vaccination is and how it makes our lives better.

PKIDs Online. PKIDs, officially Parents of Kids with Infectious Diseases, probably would not describe themselves as a "pro-vaccine" website, but they really are pro-vaccine. They tell the personal stories of parents of children who have chronic infectious diseases, most of which are vaccine preventable.

Vaccine Education Center. Run by the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (known by almost everyone as CHOP), it is one of the top websites for information about vaccines. Yes, Paul Offit is involved again. Well, when you're one of the leading experts in immunization of children, and you're on the faculty of CHOP, that's what happens.

Vaccine News Daily. This website, more or less, aggregates news articles about vaccines, while giving a brief, but useful, summary of the information. It's a good way to keep up with what's going on in the vaccine world.

I Speak of Dreams. Although not necessarily about vaccines, I Speak of Dreams is an important resource in myths (and debunking of said myths) about autism. And because vaccines and autism has been a manufactured issue since the late 1990's, anyone who discusses myths about autism has to spend an inordinate amount of time debunking the myths of vaccines and autism. If I might remind everyone,there is no correlation between vaccines and autism.

All of these websites have non-cranky writers. Well mostly. And most of them are much more patient with comments than I am, because I have no patience when it's clear that a commenter doesn't get what constitutes evidence and what doesn't.

Originally posted to SkepticalRaptor on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 11:47 AM PDT.

Also republished by SciTech and Community Spotlight.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Thank you. I don't even know many people (15+ / 0-)

    who are dumb enough to put themselves and their children at risk by not vaccinating, but the ones I do know are going to be exposed to all of these.

    I and my daughters and granddaughters get the flu, pertussis and other shots as soon as they are available and wind up not sick with sickies all around us.

    One of may brothers got really angry because our parents hadn't got us the polio vaccine and he lost the use of one arm.   The Salk vaccine came out a couple of months AFTER we had polio.  We got the sugar cube and then the shots anyway.

    I really have given up trying to understand why some people do such idiotic things.

    Nothing in the world is more dangerous than a sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity. Martin Luther King, Jr.

    by maybeeso in michigan on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 12:38:23 PM PDT

    •  I don't get it either (9+ / 0-)

      I remember polio epidemics, though I was born a few years after the Salk and Sabin vaccines were available.

      My three daughters are completely vaccinated. I don't get people who don't.

      Skepticism is evaluating the quality and quantity of evidence to reach a conclusion. It is not gathering evidence to support a closed minded conclusion.

      by SkepticalRaptor on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 01:29:44 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Do you read the blog of a certain oncologist... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        FarWestGirl, DavidMS

        ....who specializes in debunking a wide range of medical quackery?

        There's something in your writing style that comes across as a "hat tip" to that guy, similar to the way musicians use certain stylistic things to very deliberately acknowledge each other as influences or respected peers.  BTW I've been reading his stuff for years, and I occasionally post comments there under another pseudo that doesn't trace to my identity here.

        We got the future back. Uh-oh.

        by G2geek on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 08:08:55 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  less and less people remember the pre-vaccine (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        G2geek, mumtaznepal, FarWestGirl, DavidMS

        days.

        You know how many of those people are on those websites-they think that fresh air, good organic/free range food, healthy living will keep their/their kids immune systems "strong" so they don't need vaccines! That's their theory. They think they have all the information/data in order to use their intellect to draw conclusions, but do not grasp that they actually do not understand/grasp some concepts necessary to draw any conclusions at all. They don't know what they don't know. I can often even see what exact aspect of immunology/epidemiology they do not grasp when they make their mistaken conclusions.

        Those who deny the existence of herd immunity, as they and their children (and all of us) bask in its rewards as they argue against its existence, drive me up the wall the most.

        They believe only what they can see themselves. They see no one with these diseases yet hear the shots have side effects so it does not compute to them to give the shots.

        People in your generation and older need to tell their stories about what it was like.

        I was born in the first year or two where kids automatically got most of the common childhood vaccines. My friends a decade older all have relatives or friends who got polio and I myself, who don't know many people, do know at least 3 people who had polio when young, two of whom are dealing with post-polio syndrome now. Relatives have told me how scared parents were every summer, even how it impacted their childhoods.

        Most parent's today don't know how it was. It's almost as if we should have older people go to groups of parents and give talks about life before vaccines and how scary it was for parents.

        •  worse yet, the "natural immunity" crowd. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          FarWestGirl, DavidMS

          This kind of thing:  Measles isn't so bad, and after you have it, you'll have "natural immunity."

          Worst of all, deliberately getting their kids infected with chicken pox.  

          Ixquick-search "pox parties" and read up.  Or start here:

          https://en.wikipedia.org/...

          What these people do is share germs deliberately.  For example a kid comes down with chicken pox, they have the kid suck on some lolly pops to get the chicken pox germs on them, and then they mail the contaminated lolly pops around their social circle to give to their own kids.  

          "Some parents have attempted to collect infected material, such as saliva, licked lollipops, or other infected items from people who claim to have children infected with chickenpox.[5] The parents use social networking services to make contact with these strangers. The unknown person then mails the potentially infectious matter to the requester, who gives it or feeds it to his or her child in the hope that the child will become ill.[2][5]"  (From the Wikipedia article.)

          Sending that stuff through the mail is illegal as hell, and someone needs to start reporting these groups to the Postal Inspection Service, who will investigate and prosecute and get convictions.  (The Postal Inspectors are the nation's oldest LE agency, with a serious reputation for being ferociously effective: they do not lose cases.  And yes, parents who do this stuff deserve to go to prison.)

          We got the future back. Uh-oh.

          by G2geek on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 09:15:57 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  As I kid, I had mumps, measles and chicken pox, (0+ / 0-)

            and parents pretty much hoped all the kids in the family would get it at the same time. They didn't make much effort to keep you apart.  Neighbors stayed clear, of course.

            "Privatize to Profitize" explains every single Republican economic, social and governing philosophy. Take every taxpayer dollar from defense, education, health care, public lands, retirement - privatize it, and profit from it.

            by mumtaznepal on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 09:21:21 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  that was then, now's now. (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              FarWestGirl, DavidMS, O112358

              Before there were vaccines for these diseases, the best one could hope for was a mild case.  If all the kids got it at once they could be kept home at the same time, preventing spread to other kids.

              But 40+ years have gone by and now we have safe shots for all of those.  

              40 years ago, you could get cars with seatbelts but not shoulder belts.  But nobody today would like to return to that situation either, and it's also illegal now for small kids to ride in cars without being in safety seats.  

              Adults are free to drive without their belts on, and risk getting a ticket.  But it's illegal to remove the seat belts from a car that has them.  And putting a kid in a car without a child safety seat is a much bigger deal unless it's an emergency as in "kid fell and broke bones, need to get to the hospital immediately."

              Shipping pox-infected lollypops and the like through the mail, also carries a risk of infecting postal workers and others, for which reason it's a felony.  Even though in all likelihood the pox will become inactive pretty quickly and the package won't be breached, it's illegal because if we allowed it, there would be much more of that kind of cargo and a proportionally higher risk.

              We got the future back. Uh-oh.

              by G2geek on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 10:08:40 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •   probably because it is futile to keep kids in (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              G2geek

              one household from eventually getting it fro their sibling, they might as well get sick at the same time. It is more efficient and makes your house illness free faster.

            •  Right! (0+ / 0-)

              I'm 79 years old.  That means I grew up when there were virtually no vaccines.
              I, and almost all of my grammar school classmates, got Chicken Pox, Measles, Mumps, and many other assorted communicable diseases.  None of them were considered life threatening.  If you look at the mortality statistics for those diseases you will find that to be true.

              So, number one, you can knock off that hysterical bullbleep that they are putting your kids at risk. They are not, plus if the inoculation works your kid is safe anyway.

              I had every one of those when I was a kid.  I don't remember my parents getting concerned about my mortality.  Two of the diseases I got were considered serious. Whooping Cough (they put a Quarantine Notice on our front door) and Pneumonia. At that time there was no Penicillin.

              Now, before all the pro-immunization people get their undergarments in a wad, I believe in the value of immunization.  Especially Polio and Small Pox.

              But. a rather significant part of our population has noticed a trend in all of the multiple inoculations given to children.  They have raised an alarm based on their experiences.  The fact that they are being actively ridiculed and vilified makes me very suspicious.  Maybe they are right and harm is being done to some of our youth.

              Calling them names and poo-pooing their concerns only goes to protect agents who may in fact be guilty of disregarding the risk of those shots.

              "If nominated, I will not run; if elected, I will not serve; if impeached, I will not leave" -Anon

              by Graebeard on Sun Jul 27, 2014 at 08:25:02 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  oh...I know an infants who died from whooping (3+ / 0-)

                cough.
                The risk is low. and easy to ignore  Except if it is your own kid who dies. Or even, falls very ill and suffers.

                Also, because so many people caught these diseases as children back in your childhood days, a high percentage of adults had immunity to many of the diseases we now vaccinate for. This herd immunity kept many diseases from running rampant in a community and lowered the risk of the vulnerable (infants and toddlers and sick people)  from catching the diseases and dying -as such populations Do die from them at a much higher rate.

                Herd immunity is a natural phenomenon in communities not just instigated by vaccination.

                Nowadays, in places with less vaccination because of ideological choices not to vaccinate one's kids. mini-epidemics happen.  Fewer and fewer adults and practically no kids have native immunity anymore having had the diseases before...the people who had these diseases as kids are dying off and a larger and larger percentage of the populace thus doesn't have natural immunity And not enough people vaccinated to give herd immunity through that means in some places.

                The phenomenon is most notable for whooping cough. Which last for about six weeks and makes particularly the younger kids very ill. Such as coughing  until they gag and throw up. Anway, in each of the recent localized epidemics at least a few babies died of pertussis..

                https://www.youtube.com/...

                https://www.youtube.com/...

                The youngest gasp for breath and suffer. I wouldn't wish it on any child. Babies under 6 months can't be immunized and have no immunity so the more people around them who have even mild disease risk infecting them. You don't want whooping cough in a community

                Luckily when you were young you happened not to know anyone who died. But if you knew or knew of 200 people when you were a kid, it is understandable that you might not happen to know anyone if the rate of death is 1 in 200.. Really, if it would be that high people could not know anyone who died and STILL if they knew the 1 in 200 (hypothetical) risk they'd not choose to risk their kids lives.

                •  it may even be that in your childhood days (3+ / 0-)

                  cases of some of these diseases tend to be milder. If many people got them, then most people might have been exposed somewhat and have antibodies that would make the disease less severe if they caught it. Or not.

                  Immunity is not an all or nothing thing. I noticed you said they'd be immune anyway if they got vaccine. That is not necessarily true because vaccines are not 100% effective. Some are only 60% effective. >For some reason people think it's an all or nothing thing and then if they get some disease they've been immunized against they thing "vaccines don't work" I see this with the flu.

                  Influenza vaccines are sometimes only 60% effective. Cuts your risk of getting the Real flu (so many people say they had the flu when they have a bad cold) and being, at the least usually, knocked out of regular life for a week. It also decreases the amount of flu (or other disease) that's circulating when many are immunized. And that itself further decreases your chances of getting sick..

                  Again healthy adults rarely get extremely ill or die of seasonal flu. But the death rate is higher for infants, the chronically ill, elders, cancer patients etc. Why get even something as safe as the usual flu and risk being the one who gives it to a vulnerable person?

                •  Whooping Cough (0+ / 0-)

                  I don't need to be lectured on the effects and seriousness of Whooping Cough.  If you bothered to read my comment you would find that I had Whooping Cough.  I know full well the symptoms and the seriousness.

                  Back in the 30's and 40's there was no antibiotic to help cure the disease.  Because of the seriousness, a large "Q" was placed on your front door to keep people away.  Parents would NOT take their kids there to be exposed.

                  But Measles, Mumps , and Chicken Pox were considered minor childhood diseases.  If you bothered to read the mortality statistics for measles you would find the deaths from measles had been reduced dramatically prior to the introduction of the vaccine and that the vaccine had very little effect after introduction. You can find out more here and here.

                  Probably the most effective reducing cause was better nutrition.  I was given regular doses of Cod Liver Oil since it contained Vitamins A and D.  I still shudder thinking about that horrible taste.  

                  I am a little disappointed by some members of the DailyKos community who appear to be jumping on the vaccine bandwagon without understanding that there are contraindications and potential harmful effects of each of the vaccines.  Based on review of those factors, some parents choose to not vaccinate.  No danger to your kids since you choose to take that risk and your kids are immune now.
                   

                  "If nominated, I will not run; if elected, I will not serve; if impeached, I will not leave" -Anon

                  by Graebeard on Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 08:12:46 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

              •  the subject has been studied (0+ / 0-)

                There are no harmful effects.  There is no risk. The whole issue is nothing but arm-waving, mostly ideologically motivated.

                In the end, reality always wins.

                by Lenny Flank on Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 08:08:28 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  No Harmful Effects? (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  indycam

                  From NNii

                  Known Side Effects

                  Nearly all children who get the MMR vaccine (more than 80%) will have no side effects. Most children who have a side effect will have only a mild reaction, such as soreness, redness or swelling where the shot was given, mild rash, mild to moderate fever, swelling of the lymph glands, and temporary pain, stiffness, or temporary swelling in the joints.

                  In about 5% to 15% of children given MMR, a fever in excess of 103 degrees F may occur—usually beginning about 7 to 12 days after the vaccine has been administered.

                  About 15% of women who receive MMR will develop acute arthritis or swelling of the joints. This condition is usually very short-lived.

                  In rare cases (about 3 children out of 10,000 given MMR, or 0.03% of recipients) a moderate reaction such as seizure related to high fever may occur. The risk of a febrile seizure after the first dose of MMRV is increased by an additional child per 1000 (compared to children who got MMR and varicella vaccine at different sites on the same day).

                  In very rare cases (far less than 1 child out of 10,000 given MMR), children have a serious reaction, such as lowered consciousness, coma, or hypersensitivity (anaphylaxis)—swelling inside the mouth, difficulty breathing, low blood pressure, and rarely, shock. Even more rarely, children may have low blood platelets that can lead to a temporary bleeding problem that is described in more detail in the “Related Issues” section below. Since 1990, there have been 11 case reports of anaphylaxis in those who received the vaccine. Thirty to 40 million children were vaccinated during this time period. No children who experienced such a reaction died as a result.

                  In extremely rare cases (less than 1 child out of 1,000,000 given measles vaccine) children have developed encephalitis 6-15 days after vaccination

                  .

                  "If nominated, I will not run; if elected, I will not serve; if impeached, I will not leave" -Anon

                  by Graebeard on Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 08:28:47 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  oh, FFS . . . . . (0+ / 0-)

                    The "harmful effects" are negligable. And they are far outweighed by the real, demonstrated, harmful effects of the diseases they prevent.

                    I find it interesting that so many of our resident crackpot contingent has now taken to declaring "I'm not an anti-vaxxer and I'm all in favor of some vaccines, but . . ." and then go on to parrot all the standard anti-vax crap that has been floated for years now.  It means they finally recognize that most people think they are kooky, and are trying to hide it.

                    In the end, reality always wins.

                    by Lenny Flank on Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 08:34:16 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Harmfull Effects Negligable? (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      indycam

                      Interesting reasoning.  Kids having an anaphylaxis reaction or developing encephalitis are suffering only negligible effects.  Yet the "real, demonstrable, harmful effects" of measles and mumps are serious?

                      Give me a break.

                      Your flawed reasoning surprises me since I have admired your writing in the past.  It appears that you are part of that name calling group that is not interested in facts getting in the way of your opinion. Pity.

                      "If nominated, I will not run; if elected, I will not serve; if impeached, I will not leave" -Anon

                      by Graebeard on Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 04:08:02 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  whatever (0+ / 0-)

                        Let's make a deal---you can list all the people who have been harmed or killed or whatever by vaccines, and I can list all the people who have been harmed or killed or whatever, and we can compare lists to see whose list is longer.

                        Deal?

                        (sigh)  Teh stoopid.  It burns.

                        It appears that you are part of that name calling group that is not interested in facts getting in the way of your opinion. Pity.
                        No--I am obviously part of the corporate science Pfizer Big Pharma conspiracy.  (sigh)

                        In the end, reality always wins.

                        by Lenny Flank on Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 04:13:51 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  You need to appologize to Greabeard . (0+ / 0-)

                          You have been rude , nasty and wrong .
                          You claimed ,

                          There are no harmful effects. There is no risk.
                          and Greabeard correctly pointed out that that is not true .
                          You have changed your position and now are saying there are harmful effects and risks but they are not as bad as the things the vaccine work against . You have flip flopped and not admitted your mistakes . I seen this bull shit from you in the past , I've seen other write about these things that you do .

                          http://www.hrsa.gov/...
                          National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program

                          On October 1, 1988, the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 (Public Law 99-660) created the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP). The VICP was established to ensure an adequate supply of vaccines, stabilize vaccine costs, and establish and maintain an accessible and efficient forum for individuals found to be injured by certain vaccines. The VICP is a no-fault alternative to the traditional tort system for resolving vaccine injury claims that provides compensation to people found to be injured by certain vaccines. The U. S. Court of Federal Claims decides who will be paid.
                          http://www.hrsa.gov/...
                          Vaccine Injury Table of covered vaccines and associated injuries
                          The Vaccine Injury Table (Table) makes it easier for some people to get compensation. The Table lists and explains injuries/conditions that are presumed to be caused by vaccines. It also lists time periods in which the first symptom of these injuries/conditions must occur after receiving the vaccine.
                          No--I am obviously part of the corporate science Pfizer Big Pharma conspiracy.  (sigh)
                           Graebeard said nothing along those lines , you pulled that bullshit out of your ass . It's one of your standard tiny little bull shit games . Grow up !

                          You suggested that I put up or "stfu" before ,
                          so using your style so that you might understand ,
                          grow the fuck up lenny or shut the fuck up .

                          "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                          by indycam on Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 04:31:13 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  nonsense (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            kfunk937

                            this whole "vaccines are dangerous and unsafe !!!!" horse shit is idiotic, and is nothing more than stealth anti-vax dumbfuckery.

                            They deserve nothing more than to be mocked and laughed at.

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 04:44:04 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Who are you quoting ? (0+ / 0-)
                            "vaccines are dangerous and unsafe !!!!"
                            If you are not quoting anyone , then you are just spewing bull shit again . Your game is small and weak , grow the fuck up or shut the fuck up .

                            "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                            by indycam on Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 07:23:32 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                      •  ps--you may want to read up on the death rate (0+ / 0-)

                        from measles--it killed 122,000 people in just 2012 alone.

                        How many people did vaccines kill in that year?

                        Teh stoopid, it burns . . . . . .

                        In the end, reality always wins.

                        by Lenny Flank on Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 04:16:47 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Your just wildly flinging shit now There are no ha (0+ / 0-)

                          that has nothing to do with backing up your wild nonsensical bull shit claim

                          There are no harmful effects. There is no risk.
                          Why don't you try to be rational ?

                          "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                          by indycam on Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 04:34:55 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  OK, I'll be rational . . . . (0+ / 0-)

                            I'll stop arguing with the crackpot.  Arguing with crackpots never does any good anyway.  (shrug)

                            In the end, reality always wins.

                            by Lenny Flank on Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 04:46:05 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I doubt you will be true to your word , (0+ / 0-)

                            your games are are small and simple .
                            Grow the fuck up or shut the fuck up .

                            "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                            by indycam on Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 07:26:23 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Thank You (0+ / 0-)

                            Appreciate your comments.  My Irish temper was getting the better of me as it does on occasions so I thought I would stop commenting.
                            You said it better and more cogent than I could.
                            Deaths related to measles are very rare in the United States.  Mainly due to the improvements in diet in the 1920's and 30's.  The introduction of the vaccine had little effect on mortality.  This was pointed out in my links in the previous post.

                            The mortality rate is higher in Africa where the diets are deficient and the genral health of the population much more precarious.

                            Lenny wanted examples of harm and I could start with my Grandson who was progressing normally at age 1 1/2, starting to talk, and interacting normally, and after getting the shot had a high fever, convulsions and stopped talking.  By age 2 1/2 they diagnosed Autism.  Lenny would say that example proves nothing.  My daughter would disagree.

                            "If nominated, I will not run; if elected, I will not serve; if impeached, I will not leave" -Anon

                            by Graebeard on Sun Aug 03, 2014 at 11:43:13 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                •  Are you saying that about vaccines ? (0+ / 0-)
                  There are no harmful effects. There is no risk.

                  "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

                  by indycam on Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 10:49:22 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

          •  Wow, this was my childhood (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            G2geek
            Worst of all, deliberately getting their kids infected with chicken pox.
            My mom sent me to my friend's house when he got the chicken pox. Worked, 'cause I got it, too! This was the 50s though.

            Scratch the surface of someone claiming that religion is needed to legitimize government, and odds are underneath you'll find a petty dictator who wants to order people around "Because God says so!"

            by rreabold on Sun Jul 27, 2014 at 10:32:18 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  more rational choice then that today (0+ / 0-)

              Because two to one a kid WAS surely going to get CP at some point. Why not control iwhen?

              Now a person need not get it. I have chickenpox scars on my face. Wish I didn't.

              CP vaccine, if you don't know, is newish. I wasn't vaccinated and caught it at school but was vaccinated for all the others.

    •  Even here in Massachusetts (8+ / 0-)

      Folks in the mountains in the west are reasonably affluent and reasonably well educated, and the population is not so low density as people seem to think.  Never the less, there is an active anti-vaxxer community that seems to think it will be protected by living out in the woods.  No great catastrophes yet, but we are a short drive from Brooklyn and measles and all the other epidemics in waiting so it's only a matter of time before the two emergency rooms serving Berkshire County start to see preventible outbreaks.

      Vai o tatu-bola escamoso encontrar-me onde estou escondendo? Lembro-me do caminho de ouro, uma pinga de mel, meu amado Parati (-8.75,-8.36)

      by tarkangi on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 01:47:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  now if only they would self-quarantine. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        FarWestGirl, DavidMS

        Sure they'll be protected by living in the woods, as long as they have no contact with the outside world.

        As far as I'm concerned, anyone who wants a "personal belief exemption" should be required to live in self-quarantined communities.

        They can conduct their external trade via intermediaries, in much the same manner as the Amish conduct theirs via Mennonite intermediaries.   They can also receive goods from the outside world via delivery services such as the Post Office and other carriers.  Any such intermediaries (and other necessary external visitors such as first-responders, water/sewer/sanitation workers, etc.) should of course be fully immunized for protection in both directions.

        Any such communities should be provided with adequate police protection outside their borders, to protect them against bioterrorists who might see them as targets-of-opportunity.  But the salary of a couple of cops is a reasonable price to pay for the tradeoff of an arrangement that allows anti-vaxers a way to live their lives without being a danger to the general public.

        1)  The belief that vaccinations contravene the will of a deity or equivalent principle, is crazy-stuff, but so is the belief that zygotes have minds.

        2)   This is a "put up or shut up," that makes the sharp distinction between consenting-adult risk and non-consensual risk.  Adults have the right to risk getting deadly diseases as long as they also do not put their children at risk or put the general public at risk.   (You have the right to get drunk, but not a right to drink and drive.)

        a)  If nonvaxed adults ran around in the general public, they could pick up diseases as "asymptomatic carriers" and infect their kids.  That's not acceptable.

        b)  They could also infect other adults in society-at-large.  That's also not acceptable.

        c)  If they're truly serious about the deity sending them to a nasty afterlife for getting vaccinated, then they should be willing to sacrifice certain "worldly conveniences" in order to remain on the right side of their deity.

        d)  What they do not get to do is claim an exemption and then externalize the cost of it onto others by putting others at risk for diseases.  (The right to get drunk vs. the right to drink & drive.)

        3)  Society at-large can make an accommodation by providing extra police protection in the event that bioterrorists saw any such self-quarantined community as a target.  That's a reasonable accommodation, and it also has the added benefit of making sure that people inside don't go outside unless they get their shots first.

        We got the future back. Uh-oh.

        by G2geek on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 08:40:31 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Narcissists Deny Their Kids Medical Care (5+ / 0-)

      Apparently there are plenty of affluent people whose kids have been to the dentist and have really bad teeth.  Because they really need to rub it in that they regard their kids as possessions.

      Denying children medical care comes up in  discussion of being raised by narcissistic parents.

      That would also fit with a defiant attitude towards science and education, even among educated people.

      It reminds me of this:

      So how about that, Mr. Smarty Pants Communist? Mr. College Professor? Mr. Beatnik? Mr. Hippie? What have you done for me lately?
      -Firesign Theater

      Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

      by bernardpliers on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 07:45:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  thing is, most anti-vaxers I've been in contact (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        churchylafemme, G2geek, mumtaznepal, T100R

        with take parenting seriously. They aren't narcissists. They think they are good parents and are trying to be good parents. They fail.

        They are ignorant of immunology and epidemiology and arrogant enough to think they know enough to second guess scientists without having all the information needed. Most of them are not making informed choices.  I read what they write online and have heard arguments in person.

        •  Stupid, Arrogant, Concerned With Public Image (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          G2geek

          I wouldn't rule out narcissism. There's narcissism in trolling - it's being stupid for the benefit of an audience who will tell them how "good" they are.

          Here's a good quote

          Nothing is more destructive to a community, to creativity, than the desire to be seen as a good person and the deceptions that are mobilized to make that happen.  
          - Stephen Berg, The Poetry Does Not Matter

          Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

          by bernardpliers on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 08:57:33 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  alcoholics in denial, driving drunk. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          mumtaznepal, DavidMS

          Alcoholism is a medical condition, but driving while drunk is a crime.  

          Alcoholics are good people (all other factors equal), but drunk drivers deserve to be caught and prosecuted.

          We got the future back. Uh-oh.

          by G2geek on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 09:19:26 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  The anti-vaxers I know of are gullible, not (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bernardpliers, O112358

          very good at discerning science from imagination, reality from fantasy.  They literally do believe everything they read on the internet.  They have difficulty understanding why they should not.  They do not possess critical reasoning skills.  They are fear-motivated.

          They seem less about being good parents (or pet owners) than about being a good part of the cult they worship.

          "Privatize to Profitize" explains every single Republican economic, social and governing philosophy. Take every taxpayer dollar from defense, education, health care, public lands, retirement - privatize it, and profit from it.

          by mumtaznepal on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 09:24:30 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Where Have I Heard This Before? (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            mumtaznepal

            http://www.dailykos.com/...

            Journalistic circles in particular like to describe the press as a 'great power' in the state. As a matter of fact, its importance really is immense. It cannot be overestimated, for the press really continues education in adulthood.

            Its readers, by and large, can be divided into three groups:
            First, into those who believe everything they read;
            Second, into those who have ceased to believe anything;
            Third, into the minds which critically examine what they read, and judge accordingly.
            ...
            Numerically, the first group is by far the largest. It consists of the great mass of the people and consequently represents the simplest-minded part of the nation. It cannot be listed in terms of professions, but at most in general degrees of intelligence. To it belong all those who have neither been born nor trained to think independently, and who partly from incapacity and partly from incompetence believe everything that is set before them in black and white.
            ...
            To them also belongs the type of lazybones who could perfectly well think, but from sheer mental laziness seizes gratefully on everything that someone else has thought, with the modest assumption that the someone else has exerted himself considerably.
            -Adolph Hitler, Mein Kampf
            (pretty sure this was ghostwrittten by Goebbels)

            Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

            by bernardpliers on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 09:52:23 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Hey, the man was correct. Critical reasoning (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              bernardpliers

              is a skill that needs to be learned.

              I was not specifically taught how to do it in high school - not until some of my college undergraduate classes.  It is specifically taught as a skill in medical & veterinary school, and you are expected to demonstrate competence.

              Although, even in those disciplines, there are many who do not practice "evidence-based medicine" in their daily practices.  I've met quite a few!  

              And believe me, when I, as a veterinarian, know more about it than the human doctor I am consulting for a particular problem, and know how he messed up or what he skipped due to sheer mental laziness, it's very disconcerting.

              "Privatize to Profitize" explains every single Republican economic, social and governing philosophy. Take every taxpayer dollar from defense, education, health care, public lands, retirement - privatize it, and profit from it.

              by mumtaznepal on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 10:07:32 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  In my area they are educated moderate to left (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Lenny Flank, DavidMS

            leaning people who don't believe everything they read. They know a little and it is a dangerous thing. They are arrogant, think they know more than they do. But I live in a highly educated non-religious blue state. Writers of some of the main blogs seem like this too.

            •  anti-vaxxers seem to be divided into two groups (5+ / 0-)

              The right-leaning ones who declare "the gubmint can't tell ME what to do!!" and the left-leaning ideologues who blither "it's all a corporate-science conspiracy!!"

              They are both equally nutty, but they have entirely opposite motivations.

              In the end, reality always wins.

              by Lenny Flank on Sun Jul 27, 2014 at 07:47:04 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  CT Subculture Can Look Left, Lean Pretty Far Right (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                T100R, O112358, chrisa1

                CT websites are never more than two clicks from Holocaust denial.  

                On sites like NaturalNews we can see the overlap between anti-vax, anti-GMO, and antisemites.  It's supposedly left leaning, but creepy right wing CT stuff is in there, like Sandy Hook Truthers.

                From there you can go to sites further right in the spectrum that are into anti-UN CT, chemtrails, Holocaust denial etc.

                Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

                by bernardpliers on Sun Jul 27, 2014 at 12:59:41 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

      •  Waiting for the Electrician . . . (0+ / 0-)

        . . . or Someone Like Him.

        Is that the album for your quote?

  •  Thanks for the reference list, (11+ / 0-)

    and for your steady stream of diaries, which, like the reference sites, should be unnecessary, but aren't.

    Marx was an optimist.

    by psnyder on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 12:50:52 PM PDT

  •  VACCINES ARE A ROCKEFELLER PLOT! (6+ / 0-)

    What a hoot.  The VacLiar link illustrates how these people have zero understanding of arguments and the construction of such, but a perfect grasp of smear tactics and fearmongering.

    Vai o tatu-bola escamoso encontrar-me onde estou escondendo? Lembro-me do caminho de ouro, uma pinga de mel, meu amado Parati (-8.75,-8.36)

    by tarkangi on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 01:11:11 PM PDT

    •  VacLiar...gotta remember that (6+ / 0-)

      Awful human beings.

      Skepticism is evaluating the quality and quantity of evidence to reach a conclusion. It is not gathering evidence to support a closed minded conclusion.

      by SkepticalRaptor on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 01:30:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  what to do about that: prescribe the symptom. (0+ / 0-)

      They go on and on about the Rockefellers?

      Splendid.

      One good CT deserves another, or two or three more.

      "Chemtrails" and "9/11 Truth" are the obvious ones, but there are others, use your imagination.

      The goal is that any Joe or Jane Random who goes to those pages, should see that other anti-vaxers are wackos of the worst kind.

      "Yeah I agree, vaccines are evil, Big Pharma is evil... oh wait a minute, look at this: chemtrails, 9/11, Cheney flew the planes by remote control from his bunker?!  WTF?  Forget it, I'm outta here, these people are nuts!"

      We got the future back. Uh-oh.

      by G2geek on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 09:03:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Don't improve google rankings for liars's sites (0+ / 0-)
      "Because links are used by search engines to measure the importance of content, linking to a piece of pseudoscience or misinformation (in the process of rebutting or debunking it) might actually have the effect of making it more visible to others."

      Here's Tim Farley's article that explains how to set up your link so the extra hits don't get counted. You'll still be able to reference and link the site, it just won't add to the google data.Read this >Do Not Link

       His article also refers to a way to have rebuttal article links pop up:

      RBUTR is an excellent skeptic tool is...  a service that links web pages to other articles which rebut them (hence the name). Skeptics could do well to both evangelize the tool to the general public, and to populate it with links to good skeptical content.
      Read about it here >universal linking tool
  •  I am in solidarity with your sarcasm (7+ / 0-)

    and impatience when advocating for vaccinations, because I am exactly the same. It is completely appropriate. That people continue to try make logic out of fear and delusion is a massive mystery to me. I am sure I have my own stuff I am stubbornly stupid about but ........

  •  It is the arrogance that astounds me the most. (5+ / 0-)

    They don't even know what they don't know. I hate that trait in people--they conclude too quickly before they have all the information.

    They think scientists are all in cahoots with "Big Pharma" and vaccines are a plot to make money for "Big Pharma". Yep, that means they think that the  vast majority of tens of thousands of people with PhD's in epidemiology and immunology and MDs in pediatrics would be either wrong or nefariously corrupt. That part of the plot is to "make up" concepts like "herd immunity" as a reason to keep vaccine percentages high.

    I've heard so many argue why "herd immunity" is a crock. So many of them think herd immunity wild theory put out by corrupt scientists out to make a buck.

    The lack of intellectual curiosity also astounds. Why not read up on concepts in epidemiology and immunology in order to better decide if it's all a pack of lies? But no...

  •  I notice that our own resident crackpot contingent (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DavidMS, tarkangi, T100R

    seems to be staying OUT of the vax diaries.  Apparently they've been smacked upside the head more than they like.

    Good.

    In the end, reality always wins.

    by Lenny Flank on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 09:14:37 PM PDT

  •  There are two ways to gain immunity from (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    T100R

    a disease:

    1)  Get the disease.  Ouch.

    2)  Get an immunization.  Ahhh.

    One can expect the herd immunity of the population to protect your crazy anti-vaccination delusions.  Yeah, that works. Until the crazies gain too much ground, and lower the herd immunity to less than about 65%.

    "Privatize to Profitize" explains every single Republican economic, social and governing philosophy. Take every taxpayer dollar from defense, education, health care, public lands, retirement - privatize it, and profit from it.

    by mumtaznepal on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 09:18:52 PM PDT

    •  correction: 85% to 95% is needed (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mumtaznepal, T100R

      It takes about 95% immunity to avoid massive outbreaks of measles and whooping cough.

      •  That is very individually disease-dependent, (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        T100R, O112358

        as it relates directly to methods of transmission, etc.  

        But that touches upon the good point your post brings up  - that the fine points of "herd immunity" are dismissed out-of-hand by anti-vaxers

        "Privatize to Profitize" explains every single Republican economic, social and governing philosophy. Take every taxpayer dollar from defense, education, health care, public lands, retirement - privatize it, and profit from it.

        by mumtaznepal on Sat Jul 26, 2014 at 09:55:57 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  most require at least about 80% (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          T100R

          It's easy to see why if you think about the number of possible contagion events a typical person experiences each day.

          For some diseases that includes touching door knobs, being in the same room, etc.

          If just 1/20 of the population gets sick, and if just 1/50 of those are contagious at any given time, you can still get enough contagious contact to spread the disease exponentially.

  •  Thank you. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    libera nos, DavidMS

    I checked out that "VacTruth" site and was appalled at what I saw.  I guess when you have nothing positive to offer about your basic assertion it pays to create fear and an atmosphere of conspiracy.

    One wonders how it would be if all that energy was actually focused on a positive aspect of public health: like pushing the FDA to eliminate indiscriminate use of antibiotics in animal husbandry (if CAFO operations can even be called that).

    Vaccines have been a profound public health success for us all - starting from the 1860s when the understanding of infectious disease by the early microbiologists was begun (well, even before then, but my bias is to consider that period as the critical time for the start of that field).

  •  What do you think about the (0+ / 0-)

    Journal of Immunology?  While it is the official journal of The American Association of Immunologists it's impact factor (as of 2010) is (was?) only 5.788.

    You have watched Faux News, now lose 2d10 SAN.

    by Throw The Bums Out on Mon Jul 28, 2014 at 03:08:06 AM PDT

  •  On the other hand... (0+ / 0-)

    The ignorance and disrespect shown to those who choose not to vaccinate (note: nobody wants to prevent YOU from vacinating) is really disappointing.  Let's stop with the name-calling.  I actually left DailyKos for a while because of this type of thing.  It has nothing to do with religion, it has nothing to do with intelligence.  It is truly a question of science, but IMHO (based on research and personal observation) the jury is very much out.

    The problem with herd immunity is that it doesn't work with immunizations, because immunization efficacy wears off after 2-10 years.  The majority of the adult population is not protected.  Herd immunity was discovered and documented for natural immunity, which lasts a lifetime.  Vaccines just don't do that.  That's the science.  Further, and apologies I don't have the link but if you remotely care you can google it, the number of recent "outbreaks" of measles (which is only a few dozen people anyways) are not statistically tied to the number of people getting exceptions.  Even though that number has risen, if you believe in math you must conclude that outbreaks will happen.  And if you look at the cases, you will find a large number of fully vaccinated folks among those catching measles, whooping cough, etc.

    Again, the science on vaccines is NOT in... and those that claims it is an open-and-shut case clearly does not understand the issue.  There is quite a few case studies and more than a bit of research out there linking vaccines to all kinds of complications, including fatal reactions.  The problem is that it's become so taboo that proper research cannot be done.   I'd love to see a study examining long term health of vaccinated and unvaccinated, but it doesn't exist.  I want more science, not less.  The environment in which we live in 2014 is not the same as in the 60s or 70s or 80s.  The reactions some of these kids have may not have been possible 40 years ago.  It's too bad science hasn't found out what's causing these reactions, but that doesn't mean they don't exist or didn't happen.  That's the epitome of anti-science: "It doesn't fit my existing knowledge, it must not be happening."  Anecdotal evidence is obviously not scientific proof, but after mountains of it start to form, anyone with a curious mind must start to ask what's going on.

    If someone's response to a vaccine post is either "Jenny McCarthy" or "Andrew Wakefield" then they are simply showing their ignorance and have little to add.

    This is my favorite general writing on the topic:
    http://www.livingwhole.org/...

    Peace.

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