University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies has a little blurb on its website.
“It’s unique but incredibly inclusive, everyone fits in somewhere”.
This was a piece I offered to do for The True Pooka, for those who are unaware? True Pooka and Lilandra have both been dealing with the nature of Secular Pro-Life and actively engaging in analysing their beliefs. So far from my contact? I think their entire argument is purely philosophical and exists purely in the idealised world of academia. Bereft of real world experience and rationalisations, secular pro-life lacks any real spine except a forceful conviction that philosophy sans real world application is valid and possibly the notion that babies are cute, how can you not want one? [Read more...]
Well Miri’s off on facebook giving the Designer Shoe Warehouse (DSW) a piece of her mind.
You won’t believe how handy Wikipedia is to a medic in training, sometimes you just need to look something up. A condition, a drug or a procedure, and you don’t have a book to hand. And often you may not know which book the procedure is detailed, so what do you do?
See while Wikipedia is a public encyclopedia, it’s science sections are at least rigorously maintained. So if you need the basics you can just look it up. It’s good enough for a basic answer, if you need more details? Well, then you bust out your text books. [Read more...]
Much as I find praying for the victims of cancer a bit of a pointless if harmless exercise, I find this alternative worse. Brian Chambers is either a deluded fool or a man who is harming people who are desperate.
He’s the pusher of a video that claims to have a way to cure cancer based on biblical principles. And he has a video out whose transcript is a rather illuminating experience. [Read more...]
Circumcision is a contentious subject. While many people believe it’s a harmless practice and produces an aesthetically pleasing penis with a myriad of (dubious) health benefits, many consider the non-prescriptive usage of the procedure to effectively be pointless mutilation of a child due to cultural reasons.
Let’s get this straight. This is not Female Genital Mutilation, the effect of circumcision on men and women is entirely different and cannot be compared. In fact there are a fair few men who have to have circumcisions at some point in their life for therapeutic purposes but such a procedure is done under a licensed setting by a licensed individual trained to perform this procedure.
Out of 500 circumcisions, 1 ends in complications and the complications are generally severe. Circumcision is not a cosmetic procedure and should not be treated as such. [Read more...]
Whenever I debate and talk to quacks or the supporters of quacks it is often under the guise of something called “Health Freedom”. That the patient has a right to choose between equal therapies.
Now the problem is this.
Medicine is not like Plumbing or the wiring of your Home. Those are fields I have no idea about and will defer to the expert. However I understand that water goes through pipes and electricity to cables and that electricity is dangerous and needs safety features.
Medicine may as well be witch craft. The knowledge, education and things done have little to no stepping stone of progress to the average person because it’s such a specialised field. [Read more...]
Alan Keyes is a lot of things. Republican Right Winger and all around oblivious to a lot of things.
If you can accept big superstitions such as religion and extreme economics then it’s easy to accept the little ones. Alan Keyes is anti-vax. Not even the mild “anti” but the full on conspiracy nut. [Read more...]
|Viera Schiebner at her non-muggle job.|
I find this woman odious, a genuine harpy. Twisting the misery and suffering of countless children across the world to fit her world view of anti-vaccination and anti-medicine. Her work has recently begun to resurface courtesy of outbreaks of measles across Europe. It’s not sufficient that she misrepresents her “speciality” as a micro-paleontologist and uses her doctrate to make people assume that she is a medical doctor. Her work has routinely been called to question and is responsible for the idea that the whooping cough vaccine is responsible for SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). She has also linked Shaken Baby Syndrome to vaccination and claimed that childhood diseases such as mumps, measles, whooping cough and german measles are vital for development and only cause fatalities under medical mismanagement. Her work forms the foundation of all sorts of moronic anti-vaccine ideology based out of Australia. In response to the previous Measles outbreak in the UK immediately post Andrew Wakefield’s shoddy research she produced her own Quick Points about the Measles Outbreak.
1. Peter Flegg failed to respond/refute that The Amish who claim religious exemption to vaccination had not reported a single case of measles for 18 years (between 1970 and December 1987). He ignored my quoting Hedrich (1933), who is credited with coining the term “herd immunity”, and showing that measles have dynamics of 2-3 years and up to 18 years. Not just 2 years as plainly asserted by Dr Flegg.
|Racism was also more
acceptable black then.
I mean back then!
Amish Herd Immunity comes from the General population who surround them having herd immunity due to our vaccinations. They are a tiny population that cannot move very far and is rarely in contact with other humans bar visitors who view them as a curiosity and a throwback to a simpler time of barn dances, buggy rides, simple home improvement and dying in childbirth.
And her data fails to understand how Measles spreads and stops at 1987 because there was a mass outbreak in the Amish community courtesy of two school kids who developed the measles rash starting on the 21st of March 1988. The disease cut through the amish like wildfire causing 142 cases of which one child died of measles meningitis. The ensuing fear of the measles caused an increase of vaccination in the Amish community which is normally around 20% to 70% due to fear of the disease.
In addition for the same period multiple other communities acquired the disease due to the practices of the amish of not following quarantine. Many amish children survived solely due to medical intervention from the US government.
Hedrich’s paper is a bag of useless in this day and age because back then roughly 4 million cases of measles were seen per year with nearly 15,000 to 20,000 complications resulting in roughly 450 deaths a year. Now in the west combined we don’t even have 450 cases of measles. It’s a testament to how effective vaccination is.
2. It is a documented fact that measles vaccine was introduced in the US, and used in mass proportions coincidentally with the beginning of an 18-year cycle of no incidence of measles. During that time, the vaccines kept measles epidemics occurring every 2-3 years in the non-Amish US communities at the time when the unvaccinated Amish had no cases.
The current outbreaks of measles are directly linked to the idiocy of Andrew Wakefield’s research and the people who were conned into not taking the MMR vaccine. There is a direct correlation to the increase in measles post reduction in vaccination. Also if measles had a 18 year cycle then we would have seen a lot more outbreaks rather than these piddly numbers of 100 to 200 (sad cases but still piffling) considering the USA was once home to upto 4 million cases per year.
3. As far as the herd immunity and vaccination is concerned, there is no positive relationship there. The vaccines do not even protect the individual recipients, notwithstanding protecting the community. I quoted Rauh and Schmidt (1965. Measles immunization with killed virus vaccine. Am J Dis Childhood; 109: 232-237) who described a 1963 epidemic of measles in Cincinnati and wrote “It is obvious that three injections of killed vaccine had not protected a large percentage of children against measles when exposed within a period of two-and-a-half years after immunization”. Actually, Dr Flegg unwittingly provided similar evidence for the ineffectiveness of measles vaccines by writing “full measles vaccination”. It was precisely the failure of one jab of measles vaccines to prevent their recipients getting measles that prompted the introduction of further doses of the same (ineffective) vaccine.
1963 vaccines have been improved on. Vaccines do not produce a total immunity but they produce a resistance. It’s like saying that people still die despite wearing bullet proof armour so we should not give our soldiers armour ignoring those who are saved.
The 1963 killed vaccine was not efficient. After the first dose only 25% had immunity after a year. After the booster only 60% and after the third dose only did it get to the 90% mark.
The modern Measles vaccine is the MMR and is a live vaccine which has excellent protection.
4. Dr Flegg is plainly inaccurate, if not wrong
, in stating that it was only the recipients of the killed measles virus vaccine revaccinated with the live virus measles vaccine that developed atypical measles. I quote Krause et al (1980. Measles-specific lymphocyte reactivity and serum antibody in subjects with different measles histories. Am J Dis Childhood; 134: 567-571) who wrote “Since in the past, occasional cases of atypical measles have been noted in persons who as far as could be discerned had received only live vaccines, it has occurred to us that under certain abnormal circumstances, measles-specific lymphocyte sensitization can happen in individuals other than recipients of killed vaccine. Recent trends have led to situations where children have received multiple doses of live vaccine. ” And further “…, we have wondered about the possibility of exaggerated measles-specific lymphocyte reactivity in some multiply vaccinated persons.” One is tempted here to ask, if multiple doses of live measles virus vaccines cause such abnormal circumstances why then administer multiple doses to start with? Cherry (1980. The ‘New’ epidemiology of measles and rubella. Hospital Practice; July: 49-57) wrote “What about the possibility of waning immunity in those who had been vaccinated? In the 1970-71 epidemic, studies in the St Louis area indicated that about one half of 10,000 cases of measles [now that’s a substantial epidemic at the time when the unvaccinated Amish reported no cases!] occurred in vaccinees and about half had been less than one year old at the time of immunization. Some of the affected children in St Louis had mild, apparently modified, disease. About one third of the vaccine failures showed only secondary specific antibody (IgG) response, that is evidence of prior immunologic stimulation to measles without subsequent protection. Similar data for Cincinnati were reported by C.C. Linnemann Jr et al. and for New Haven by A. Schluederberg et al. both of whom noted a large number of “vaccine failures” in patients whose IgG was responsive but whose IgM was not…In short, since these studies indicated that vaccine failure rates increase with time, one could make a case for evidence of waning immunity: however, the influence of improper immunization in these “failures” could not be discounted”. And there is more: “In short, the data suggested that a booster dose might not have any lasting effect on waning immunity.” I am impressed that such a staunch proponent of vaccination as Dr Cherry so honestly reported on the observed fundamental problems with measles vaccination.
Okay. However there is no need for booster doses when using live vaccines as the low virulence but high antigenicity of the live vaccine allows you to give just a single MMR shot and gain life long resistance.
5. Having mild measles is not such a good thing, as Ronne (1985) demonstrated in his landmark article, aptly titled “Measles virus infection without rash in childhood is related to disease in adult life” Lancet; 5 Jan: 1-5). He demonstrated that those adults who did not have measles in childhood, and, when having measles, did not develop proper rash, had substantially increased incidence of degenerative diseases of bone and cartilage, sebaceous skin disease, immunoreactive disease and some tumours. These were only the four diseases he looked into, there may be other conditions which are prevented by having natural measles. West (1969. Epidemiologic studies of malignancies of the ovaries. Cancer; July: 1001-1007) demonstrated that having mumps prevents ovarian cancer.
Those can be withstood and cured. Measles based complication kills children. Pneumonia, Otitis media, Acute Encephalitis, Corneal ulceration. With greater effects in adults than in children. In the west where technology is available the death rate is around 0.3%.
In rural parts of the third world the mortality rate for measles is 28%. The fewer the hospitals the greater the fatality rate. Measles is one of the biggest slayers of children across the developing world. In immunodeficient patients measles has a 30% fatality rate.
6. It is a wishful thinking of provaccinators that measles epidemics only occur in the unvaccinated: quite to the contrary. Outbreaks in even 100% vaccinated populations in the US (and elsewhere) have continued unabated (thanks for highlighting my typing error, showing Peter Flegg’s potential to be a good editor) to this day. Hedrich (1933) talked about temporary herd immunity when about 63% of suceptibles get measles, which stops the epidemic until there is again similar percentage of susceptibles. When 100% vaccination rate does not prevent epidemics, then, sorry folks, the vaccine is ineffective; moreover, the example of the above-mentioned 18-year cycle of low or no incidence of natural measles, but still characterised by regular 2-3 year epidemics of measles in the vaccinated, in fact means that the vaccine kept measles live and kicking. Just like the polio and whooping cough vaccines. Hutchins et al. (1988) reported on the Current epidemiology of pertussis in the United States (Tokai J Exp Clin Med; 13 (Suppl): 103-109 ) and demonstrated on their figure 1 that when the individual states in the US gradually one after another mandated vaccination around 1978, the incidence of pertussis increased almost three-fold, with the highest annual incidence in infants less than 12 months of age. “Children 1-4 years of age accounted for 25% of all cases but had an average annual incidence only 1/7th that of infants…Rates of hospitalization and complications such as pneumonia, seizures and encephalopathy associated with pertussis were highest in children less than 6 months of age and declined progressively with increasing age. In addition, the mortality ratio was highest in the same age group. Among children with pertussis aged 7 months to 4 years, about 3 of 5 had not received at least 3 doses of DTP (the minimum considered necessary for optimal protection)”. Taken in isolation, this statement is meaningless: it is a well-documented fact that most cases of pertussis and polio (as an example) occur after the first dose. Similar contemporary increase was observed with polio: Figure 1 in Schonberger et al. (1984. Control of paralytic poliomyelitis in the United States. Rev Infec Dis; 6, Suppl 2: S424-S426) shows exactly the same as Figure 1 of Hutchins et al. (1988): a sudden significant and sustained increase in poliomyelitis between 1975-1979, obviously coinciding with increasing numbers of small babies being vaccinated within a short period of time. This also illustrates the so called provocation nature of poliomyelitis, i.e. paralysis caused by other vaccine injections (such as DPT in this case) and vaccine-caused poliomyelitis. Indeed, earlier authors, such McCloskey 1950 (The relation of prophylactic inoculations to the onset of poliomyelitis. Lancet; 18 April: 659-663) reported on polio cases as provocation poliomyelitis, a paralysis caused by DPT injections. More recently, Romania reported on an u
nusually high (14 times that reported in the USA) incidence of provocation poliomyelitis ( Strebel et al. 1994. Paralytic poliomyelitis in Romania, 1984-1992. Am J Epidemiology; 140 (12): 1111-1124) after a variety of injections, and including DPT.
There are many things wrong with this pile of waffle. First and foremost is the complete disregard to prior rates of infection of these diseases and the old mortality rates with newer ones. What consists of a modern epidemic and a 1950s epidemic are two different things. At one point polio was a fact of life. It was a case of “Jimmy has polio and needs his lessons in an iron lung” (or more likely Mtumbi has polio and is going to die because he is poor and lives in Africa where there are no iron lungs). It is also believed by the WHO and CDC that the Pertusis aspect of the DPT vaccine saved roughly half a million lives every year and countless hours of medical care. Prevention is better than the cure and the disease still affects 48.5 million people a year and kills around 285,000 people a year mostly in the developing world where the DPT vaccine is having difficulty being rolled out. This is due to infrastructure issues as vaccines must be transported at a specific temperature making it difficult to transport to areas with bad roads and poor links. It’s the same with all vaccines.
Post immunisation rates of Diptheria, Pertussis and Tetanus (all three diseases are deadly and fearsome in their own right.) are much much lower. Roughly 85% lower. The Pertussis vaccine is not for life and is stopped after the danger zone. Adults do not get the disease as fatally as children.
Polio still exists in the world. And it’s fearsome crippling effect still has a legacy across the globe for taking healthy young children and confining them to braces and crutches for life. Romania’s Dictatorial era wasn’t exactly famed for producing unbiased medical records and shouldn’t be used without proper research.
7. I can quote hundreds of articles describing serious reactions to measles and other vaccines.
I can quote millions of cases of people whose children’s brains got fried by measles leaving them shadows of their former selves. I can show you patients who once ran but now limp on crutches thanks to polio. I can show you children dying because of whooping cough. I can shock you with the death caused by tetanus and show you visual representations of the mountains of dead babies due to the Rotavirus.
It has been proved without a shadow of a doubt that vaccination works and that while there are side effects of vaccination the risks are worth it. All it took for the current outbreak in Europe was a handful of selfish people who didn’t vaccinate their children and ultimately it was their children who suffered.
8. The causal link between vaccination with live measles virus vaccine and SSPE was also described by Modlin et al. (1977) who wrote “Histories obtained in 350 of 375 clinically confirmed cases of subacute sclerosing encephalitis (SSPE) reported to a national registry showed that 292 had measles and 58 had no history of measles. Forty of the latter patients received live, attenuated measles virus vaccine. In patients with a history of measles, measles illness occurred before the age of 2 years in 46% and a mean 7.0 years before the onset of SSPE. In contrast, there was no relationship of SSPE with age at vaccination in 35 of the 40 patients historically associated with measles vaccine, and SSPE occurred a mean 3.3 years after vaccination.” Clearly the vaccine speeded up the development of SSPE.
Clearly it did not as there is a line stating “In Contrast, there was no relationship with SSPE with age at vaccination in 35 of the 40 patients historically associated with the measles vaccine.”. No what we have here is an incidence of quote mining. I transcribe for you from the actual article (Modlin et al; 1977)
In contrast, there was no relationship of SSPE with age at vaccination in 35 of the 40 patients historically associated with measles vaccine, and SSPE occurred a mean of 3.3 years after vaccination. Based on estimated national measles morbidity data and national measles vaccine distribution data, the risk of SSPE following measles vaccination (0.5 to 1.1 cases/106) appears to be less than the risk following measles (5.2 to 9.7 cases/106). Because live measles vaccine is highly effective in preventing measles illness and a high proportion of children in the United States have received measles vaccine, these data are consistent with the observed downward trend in SSPE incidence since 1969.
This is a gross misrepresentation of research and elimination of an important line to enable the wacky theories of Viera.
9. As far as the relevance of older publications is concerned: the relevance and validity of original research and especially description of case histories has never been challenged, it is still widely quoted; moreover, much of the older research is honest as I pointed out in the case of Cherry (198O). Research into a variety of subjects, vaccines being no exception, was conducted intensely at a certain time (atypical measles in the late sixties and early seventies) and is not replicated every year. Even more ‘modern’ research has not proved vaccines effective (the glaring example being the abysmally failed recent testing of HIV vaccine: a number of volunteers contracted AIDS infection from it) and a number of malaria vaccines failed one after another. Quite recently, BMJ published Ufe Ravenskov’s letter “Should medical science ignore the past?” (BMJ.com 2008; 337: a1681) critical of an article on hypercholesterolaemia whose authors selected only reviews if they included “extensive recent references” thereby missing important knowledge from the past.
Atypical Measles Syndrome? That mainly occurred in people with the older vaccine or if the cold chain is compromised with the modern vaccine.
It’s insanely rare in the west because we have all sorts of controls that indicate the breakdown of the cold chain. Ufe Ravenskov’s letter fails to realise that there the level of excess cholesterol at death is not as important as the period during which cholesterol was high. One day of high cholesterol may be due to you having eaten a fat laden meal. What is important is cholesterol over a month.
Many of these papers quoted by Viera Scheibner are proved wrong or are incorrectly quoted and have nothing to do with statin based research. This is like posting a paper on elephant mating at a conference for particle physics.
10. Dr Flegg, just as other vaccinators, begrudges valid and relevant research published in the sixties and seventies, however, he still subscribes to the idea of vaccination developed by Edward Jenner more than two hundred years ago, when, evidently, he had no knowledge of the immune system.
Edward Jenner’s small pox vaccine saved millions of lives across the globe and smallpox is itself extinct due to his simple casual observation and understanding of disease. Milkmaids seldom contracted small pox (hence the notion of the comely milk maid. They were attractive simply because
they didn’t get the small pox scars that made other women ugly). He found a disease that had small pox like conditions and indeed experimented with chicken pox as well without success (that’s more related to herpes) before stumbling on this idea.
He genuinely did not have any idea about how his mechanism worked bar the observation. So he simply infected people with cow pox noting that the actual virulence of cow pox was further reduced when taken from a living human with the disease (much like the eastern practice of variolation where actual fluid from small pox victims was used as a precursor to this to grant people immunity in the local community but with some risk (you could catch a less virulent form of smallpox).
The idea was not developed by him. The idea is simple. Our body’s immune system functions NOT by getting the disease but by T/B lymphocytes being sensitised to a specific antigen of the disease. If we could provide antigens without the actual disease then we would sensitise the patient against the disease and prevent the spread of the disease. This was pasteur’s work. We confirmed these theories by various antibody/antigen testing in labs. It’s an easily demonstrable principle and is actually the principle by which pregnancy tests work.
11. Dr Flegg commits worse omissions than I by not revealing the vaccination states of those ‘victims of measles’ who had to be hospitalized and died etc. his sweeping statements ring hollow.
The current measles vaccine is believed to possess an 85 to 90% efficiency. Some people WILL get the disease when exposed to it but sufficient amounts of people will have resistance to prevent it from spreading as easily. Added to which partial resistances of those innoculted will produce a higher survival rate. It’s part of the reason that measles is so survivable in the west as the people themselves possess a faster response. The problem occurs when you stop vaccinating children resulting in a sufficient pool of people to allow the spread of the disease. A population of non vaccinated people sitting around away from the vaccinated people are safe UNTIL someone gets the disease. However if they are spread out evenly in a larger vaccinated population then there is no one to give them the disease, and even if one contracts the disease there is no one to spread it to so the outbreaks are small and contained.
12. Last but not least: I like vaccines to be administered to provaccinators. I can quote many examples of provaccinators refusing vaccines for themselves, such as: the medical director of the Commonwealth Serum Laboratories at the time, was quoted in The Age (newspaper) on 18.4.1976 as not having had a ‘flu shot’ in ten years. “I regard myself as a healthy-middle aged man and I think that I can withstand a bout of flu if I get it”. The same article quoted a doctor from the Fairfield Hospital in Melbourne saying that studies of immunity imparted by flu vaccines showed effectiveness levels down as low as 30%. Orenstein et al. (1981. Rubella vaccine and susceptible hospital employees. Poor physicians participation. JAMA; 245 (7): 711-713 ) reported on a vaccination non-compliance by physicians. I am also asking how come so many doctors like to administer vaccines to others when orthodox medical research (by provaccinators) demonstrated (whether consciously or unconsciously) that vaccines are ineffective to prevent diseases and the dangers are real.
I have had the polio, HiB, DPT, Tetanus Boosters, VZ, MMR and Yellow Fever vaccine. Most doctors have. Doctors do not like taking the flu vaccine because it will leave you ill for a few days and it’s hard to work with the mild flu like symptoms. Most of us healthy adults could fight off the flu and the flu vaccine is mainly administered to the elderly because they are prone to suffering the most.
13. It is the orthodox immunological research that demonstrated right ab initio that vaccines by their very nature sensitise, ie. increase susceptibility to the diseases which the vaccines are supposed to prevent and also to related and unrelated bacterial and viral infections (Craighead 1975. Report of a workshop: disease accentuation after immunization with inactivated microbial vaccines. I Infect Dis; 1312 (6): 749-754).
No it does not. It’s blatantly obvious that in the antibody/antigen system of immunology that antigen recognition sensitises you to disease and lets you fight it better the second time. Antigen recognition sans disease is what a vaccination is. It’s all the benefits of getting a disease with none of the side effects.
What is there to like in vaccines?
Why not let Nature do its own thing when it does it so well? Nature knows what to do, people often do not (calling human species homo sapiens is a misnomer). Medical errors and changing opinions are well-documented. The benefits of natural, well-managed measles (meaning, not suppressing fever and not administering antibiotics and other drugs), or any other infectious disease of childhood, are amply documented in orthodox medical literature. I suggest that Peter Flegg also reads those ‘dreaded’ historic medical papers. The way he writes suggests to me that he does not seem to have learnt enough from “experience”, either. Doesn’t he see scores of babies with ear infections right after their first dose of vaccines at 2 months? Doesn’t he see babies dying after their vaccinations? Doesn’t he see children with behavioural and learning problems?
Because nature prefers if humans do not live past 45 and places a intense mortality rate on humans while Viera Scheibner lives in a first world nation where medicine has worked to make all those diseases a thing of legend rather than a fact of life to the point where morons like Viera can say such nonsensical things.
Orthodox medicine also lists the sheer numbers of children who are deaf, blind and mentally retarded due to measles (The ultimate irony was that Measles was more likely to make your child mentally regress than the MMR vaccine). No one gives out anti-biotics for measles (a viral disease) and in any case most antibiotics are given for actual bacterial diseases.
And I am surprised Viera does not see scores of babies with cradle cap linking that to vaccination. Babies get ear infections, and it is noted that HiB vaccinated babies have a 7% decrease in related ear infections.
The behaviour and learning problem link is heavily disproved, while the actual learning problems caused by weeks off from school, money wasted and permanent effects of disease are not mentioned.