Saturday, January 8, 2011

Lack of Evidence is NOT Evidence of No Harm

This was a response written at the request of a friend who felt badgered by another person on her wall. The words in quotations are from my debating opponent. It was a quickly written, short response but I'm saving it here in case it assists anyone else.

"That is completely untrue. There is no evidence, anywhere, that autism is caused by vaccines.” 

 First, lack of evidence is NOT the same as evidence of no harm. But that logical construct aside, why do you think evidence does not exist of autistic symptoms being caused by vaccination? We know that 174 studies exist which study a particular vaccine or particular ingredient (e.g. Thimerosal) in relation to presentation of autistic symptoms. Of those 174 studies, only 58 of them were empirical. Of those 58, only 14 were offered as evidence AGAINST the autism/metal/vaccine link. (You know, the studies mentioned on the infamous http://www.fourteenstudies.org. I’m sure you’ve read that site thoroughly).

 Meanwhile, of those 58 studies, 43 of them offered evidence in SUPPORT of the theory. That translates to 74% of the studies supporting a link. We even have a super-recent study conducted on mice. Here is an excerpt:

"...thimerosal at the same concentrations received in human infants had clearly measurable effects on opioid receptor development in the infant rats. They also found that these effects were stronger at higher doses. The effect was found to be persistent, lasting well beyond the initial period of administration. According to the authors, 'very likely, it is permanent.'" (Neurochem Res. 2010 Aug 28.Neonatal Administration of Thimerosal Causes Persistent Changes in Mu Opioid Receptors in the Rat Brain.)

The thing is, everyone immediately jumps to two boring terms when discussing autistic symptoms after vaccination. They immediately associate the topic with Thimerosal, a preservative and adjuvant that is 49% ethyl mercury, or Merck’s triple MMRII vaccine. This hasty association makes for great conversations such as the one you tossed at me, but it leaves science out in the cold by ignoring the other neurotoxic ingredients, notably Aluminum Hydroxide. Take, for example, this recent study, which I hope you spend some time reading as it is available in full for free:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2819810/pdf/nihms171746.pdf
“Aluminum hydroxide injections lead to motor deficits and motor neuron degeneration”

When the FDA requested the removal of Thimerosal (as an adjuvant) in childhood vaccines, it was replaced with aluminum. In fact, there is so much aluminum in childhood vaccines that even one dose of a single vaccine exceeds the EPA’s exposure limit. You can see which vaccines contain aluminum (and which still contain Thimerosal) by viewing the CDC’s ingredient list: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/pinkbook/downloads/appendices/B/excipient-table-2.pdf 

Nevertheless, despite the existing evidence of neurological harm from vaccines, even the Centers for Disease Control gave us a concerning confession: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccinesafety/Activities/vsd/priority_studies.html 
“…this VSD study will be the first rigorous, epidemiological study conducted on the issue of thimerosal and autism.” So it seems that you and the CDC have a bit of a disagreement in regards to the science on this topic.

 “You are exposed multiples of times more mercury in a tunafish sandwich than in a vaccination.” 

First, this is an unsubstantiated statement. The FDA passed a modernization act in 1997 that required vaccine companies to stop using Thimerosal in childhood vaccinations by 2001. The companies found a loophole under the “trace amount” game. They need to use Thimerosal during production since the factories are not sterile. Then at the end of production, they attempt to remove Thimerosal and simply list it as a “trace amount” typically of .3mcg or less. There are no regulations requiring them to prove how much is in it or to test to make sure they are within certain limits. In fact, ethyl mercury has never been studied for safety or efficacy via intramuscular injection and the EPA’s safety limits are based on methyl mercury (that tuna mercury you mention).

Not sure if you realized this or not, but you are comparing two different substances in your above statement. But even if you were comparing the same substance, you are still comparing two different modes of exposure. The digestive system is a huge component of the immune system and includes several defense mechanisms to protect the body from dangerous substances, by outright destruction or safe elimination. Intramuscular injection, however, bypasses the immune system and directly exposes the human to the dangerous ingredient without any way to safely bind with other minerals or enzymes for elimination.

Of course, both forms of mercury pass the BBB (blood brain barrier). This video provides analysis on how mercury destroys neurons: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BtFsy0rQsak

With that in mind, we still attempt to avoid ALL exposure to mercury, whether in food or vaccines. I’m curious why you would assume I am avoiding one route of exposure but not another. Did you see me post a picture of my family eating tuna?

As for your attempt to dismiss a scientific and factual discussion by bringing up a few famous names, I’ll take that and raise you Paul Thorsen, who worked for the CDC and co-authored two of those famous autism studies. After he embezzled millions, he left his post. He is now practicing privately. Interesting how he was just as dishonest and fraudulent as people claim about Wakefield, but I bet you are off to google.com so you can figure out what I’m referring to, as he wasn’t smeared by the media and he still has his medical license. Oh, and when will they retract those two studies, eh? Anytime soon, you think?

You should be able to know, as an adult, that conflicts of interest exist EVERYWHERE in the medical industry. If your standards are not based on methodology and fact, but rather on which person took money from which business or who is in the political doghouse of the year, then why not buy a subscription to PEOPLE magazine.

“The ingredients in vaccines are all necessary and vital. Spend a short amount of time researching why they are in them and you will find this out.” 

I’ve long surpassed a “short time” researching them. The ingredients in vaccines are not all necessary and vital. Some of them are still being identified. For example, earlier this year the FDA discovered that both rotavirus vaccines (one by Paul Offit/Merck and one by Glaxosmithkline) are contaminated with pig viral particles. Do you have a good argument as to why unintended contamination of pig viral particles is “necessary” and “vital” for our children?

And what do you mean by necessary and vital? Do you mean, they couldn’t be bothered to create sterile factories, so they decided to get around the FDA’s safety regulation in 1997 by continuing to use Thimerosal…therefore Thimerosal is necessary? Or are you referring to the ridiculously low efficacy of the majority of vaccines, which requires them to have a toxic adjuvant to light our children up like Christmas trees in the hopes that the vaccine will provide some temporal immunity?

Although it can easily be any of these examples, I bet I’m not far off when I say what you are really describing is the rape mentality. It’s a very consistent drumroll in our society to get people to obey. It goes like this: “X is good for you. Even though it will hurt or damage you or someone, you need to obey. You must accept it. I know what’s best for you. There, honey, that didn’t hurt too bad, now did it?”

But let me ask you a question: exactly how well have YOU researched the ingredients? Can you honestly tell me that you have read every insert for every licensed vaccine in America? Have you? I encourage you to try: http://www.vaccinesafety.edu/package_inserts.htm

“Further, it is basic statistics that if there were dangerous side effects they would be substantially, exponentially, even, more widespread considering the number of people who are and have been vaccinated and the number of claims of physical harm.”

Are you referring to the reported number of vaccine injuries? The government has a database for that. It’s called the VAERS (Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System). You can view it here: http://vaers.hhs.gov/index

“The Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) is a national vaccine safety surveillance program co-sponsored by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). VAERS is a post-marketing safety surveillance program, collecting information about adverse events (possible side effects) that occur after the administration of vaccines licensed for use in the United States.”

Now, the information available is overwhelming to say the least. I often recommend that people use this search tool to plug into VEARS: http://www.medalerts.org/

Of course, even though you will find hundreds of thousands of vaccine injury and mortality reports on the VAERS site, the CDC/FDA still admit that the reports on their VAERS site represent roughly 1-10% of the actual cases.

(Public Law 99-660: The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act http://history.nih.gov/01Docs/historical/documents/PL99-660.pdf
 Rosenthal S, Chen R. The reporting sensitivities of two passive surveillance systems for vaccine adverse events. Am J Public Health 1995; 85: 1708-9. http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/articlerender.fcgi?tool=pubmed&pubmedid=7503351
Braun M. Vaccine adverse event reporting system (VAERS): usefulness and limitations. Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School)

So, it could be that you knew all of this information I just shared and have a different definition of “widespread” but I’m thinking the real issue here is that you didn’t realize until now exactly how “widespread” vaccine reported injuries are in America. We don’t even have to reach into casual or speculated concepts, such as the fact that Autism is reaching towards 10% of the population, or that 1 out of every 3 kids has Asthma, Allergies or ADHD. Those are other discussions. Direct, adverse reactions are already into the thousands and that's only the tip of the iceberg according to the government researchers.

This article, for example, outlines the laughable situation of barely a hundred non-fatal measles cases compared to over 600 reported cases of vaccine reactions, including mortality cases:

MB Comment: The CDC is out with its latest disease-mongering fear campaign: ‘The United States has had 118 measles cases so far this year, the most for this date since 1996, and close to 90% of them are linked to cases in other countries, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported today … none had encephalitis and none died.’
Sounds scary and makes you want to run out and get a MMR vaccine shot, doesn’t it? The only problem with that hysteria is that there have been 698 FDA Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) reports related to MMR, MMRV (MMR plus varicella) and measles vaccines in 2011 — including 4 deaths and 280 emergency room visits. 698 VAERS reports are almost six times more than the number of measles cases. Keep in mind that former FDA Commissioner David Kessler wrote in the Journal of the American Medical Association that “only about 1% of serious adverse events are reported to the FDA.” (JAMA. 1993;269(21):2765-2768. A New Approach to Reporting Medication and Device Adverse Events and Product Problems).
And I sincerely hope no one would be trying to argue that "There are no epidemics to support the drastic increase in vaccines since we were kids" as in that makes them unnecessary. The vaccinations are why there are no epidemics. You can go to areas of the world without vaccination and see as many epidemics as you'd like.”

Ah, the coup de gras. I’m glad you left this one at the end, because you know what they say: the last note is what everyone remembers. If there’s one thing I wish you would take from the discussion today, it’s a better understanding of what vaccine theory and experimentation have done to the human race and to our world.

Thanks to widespread vaccination, we are now dealing with “epidemics” along with serotype replacement, mutation, resistance to antibiotics and vaccines, shifting epidemiology, etc. What am I talking about? Well, for example, I am talking about:

1) The widespread use of the Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) has resulted in a mutation of the vaccine strain, which then went virulent and moved back into the general population. Nigeria is dealing with this difficulty and has seen a wild increase in mortality. Fortunately, because the OPV was causing vaccine Paralytic Polio in America, the CDC pulled that one from our list. Now we use the less effective but less likely to paralyze you IPV (inactivated) version.

2) How about that Pertussis epidemic? Did you know that scientists have discovered the two most common strains of Pertussis mutated earlier this year? The vaccine everyone has been receiving no longer works. This might explain why 2/3 of the California cases are in vaccinated people. And why every single baby that has died was in a vaccinating family and receiving or about to receive shots.

3) But let’s not forget about PCV (pneumoccocal- Prevnar). Thanks to Prevnar, your children are now at increased risk of contracting the antibiotic-resistant strain of invasive disease. Oh, and the antibiotic-resistant strain of otitis media (that means ear infection).

4) Where would we be today without HiB vaccination? This is from the CDC's Pink Book:
"In 1998–2000, approximately 44% of children younger than 5 years of age with confirmed invasive Hib disease were younger than 6 months of age and too young to have completed a three-dose primary vaccination series. Fifty-six percent were age 6 months or older and were eligible to have completed the primary vaccination series. Of these age-eligible children, 68% were either incompletely vaccinated (fewer than 3 doses) or their vaccination status was unknown. Thirty-two percent of children aged 6–59 months with confirmed type b disease had received three or more doses of Hib vaccine, including 22 who had received a booster dose 14 or more days before onset of their illness. The cause of Hib vaccine failure in these children is not known." 

5) Of course, we can’t leave Varicella out of the picture. A mild childhood illness that had a 0.002% death rate pre-vaccine has turned into quite a monster, hasn’t it? The live-viral vaccine sheds in the feces and any sores the vaccinated person gets, which means vaccinated people are vectors of the disease. But it’s done some interesting things. Oh, and thanks to reduced exposure and waning immunity from the vaccine, the epidemiology of the disease has shifted to teenagers and adults, where the illness is worse and has more complications. But…don’t worry…there’s a booster for that, for the rest of your life.

In short, widespread vaccination has not eradicated any diseases. It has not increased the overall health and quality of life in our country. It is not protecting us on a macro or micro level from disease. It is damaging countless people in numerous ways that we are still scrambling to define and learn about (all the A diseases for example). And it’s made the world even more “dangerous” just as overuse of antibiotics gave us MRSA.

So with sarcasm: thank you for vaccinating.

Without sarcasm: You’ve made the world a crappier place for ALL of our children.

(Ah, the lively chap had a response to this!)    His response:

"The reason autism is more widely diagnosed now is because it was poorly understood in the past and stigmatized. Often it was diagnosed as a variety of several disorders such as "childhood schizophrenia". Once again, there is literally no scientific evidence to back up any link between vaccination and autism or other vaccination-caused diseases. And yes, widespread vaccinations has eradicated many diseases, thus you have never met anyone with measles, mumps, rubella, smallpox, etc. I don't have much desire to carry on this conversation with someone who is literally a conspiracy theorist and is not fully-understanding of the situation. The only thing I would recommend, again, is that you talk to actual doctors about this." 

No, the rapid increase in Autistim cases is not primarily due to better diagnosis, or early diagnosis. http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=autism-rise-driven-by-environment
"California's sevenfold increase in autism cannot be explained by changes in doctors' diagnoses and most likely is due to environmental exposures, University of California scientists reported Thursday."
If you want to read through those 43 studies and come back and tell me why they do not represent "evidence" then I will buy your currently unsubstantiated opinion. As of now, the science speaks for itself. I also recommend getting out into the big wide world. Measles and mumps are seen every year in America, almost entirely in vaccinated populations. Rubella is extremely mild so we can admittedly dither on that one. I doubt most parents would even take their child into the doctor over Rubella symptoms. Smallpox was never eradicated by vaccination. The CDC noted that the Smallpox vaccine was ineffective and advised strict quarantine procedures. See, smallpox is a unique virus. It becomes contagious AFTER sores are present, so it is easily quarantined.

Of course, it's arguable that Smallpox still exists in other areas despite vaccination. The same goes for Polio. Despite super high vaccine coverage, it continues to be present in under developed countries where they used DDT as a crop spray. Never met anyone with vaccine-related illnesses? WHERE do you live???

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,379388,00.html
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/booster_shots/2010/02/mumps-outbreak-among-orthodox-jews-in-new-york.html 
http://www.medpagetoday.com/InfectiousDisease/Vaccines/18442
http://www.naturalnews.com/028142_mumps_vaccines.html
http://www.kpbs.org/news/2010/dec/15/whooping-cough-experts-rely-vaccine-companies-mone/ http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21149823/ns/health-infectious_diseases/http://guggiedaly.blogspot.com/2010/12/lets-learn-about-hepatitis-b-infection.html


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