Friday, June 19, 2015

Anecdote, Hearsay, and Innuendo about Vaccines

Let me state up front that I’m no biochemist or pharmacologist, so I really can’t judge the arguments for and against vaccination on the scientific merits. I don’t have the tools to evaluate the arguments of either side, so I have to take both sides at their word.

The question then is what to do when the sides disagree about the facts, and that problem surfaces right away. The pro-vaxx side says the science is settled: vaccinations save lives. The anti-vax side says no, the science isn’t settled, and there is good reason to believe that whether they save lives or not, they bombard the body with harmful substances that can inflict permanent debilitation.

I give the first point to the anti-vaxx side and call as my witness a pro-vaxx doctor. In personal discussions I had with him in the 1990s, he volunteered on at least two different occasions that as he had recently been thumbing through a medical textbook from the 1950s, he had realized that “everything” (I’m sure this was hyperbole) they were telling doctors to do then was considered malpractice by the 1990s.

That is, those who in the 1950s considered themselves alone fit to practice medicine (i.e., dispense medicines and perform invasive surgeries) and determine who was fit to practice medicine were instructing their acolytes to engage in practices that within forty years were found to be harmful.

Fast forward to just a few years ago when “settled science” told us there was nothing to fear from mercury in vaccinations. Well, now vaccinations don’t contain mercury. Did the change come just because of public opposition, or did the medical establishment decide mercury was harmful after all? Or were they just not taking any chances?

Just a few years ago the government agencies who are urging vaccinations today were telling us that meat and butter and other fats were bad, low-fat diets and grains and oils from corn and canola were good. Now the same people are telling us that meat and fats are OK and low-fat diets make us fat.

“Oh, but now we’ve got it right.” Uh, no. If the boy calls wolf twice, you don’t give him a third chance. You find a new shepherd.

I have a hard time believing that people who can afford organic snack food and grass-fed meat and new cars every couple of years are interested in protecting and promoting the lives of the most vulnerable in our society when their paycheck comes from an outfit that subsidizes corn production in this country, the result of which is (all together now) obesity from high fructose corn syrup, car engines ruined and energy wasted by ethanol, food animals sickened in feedlots, and corn farmers in Mexico put out of business.

I don’t know that there’s a connection, but I find it interesting that Bill Gates and Ted Turner have stated publicly that they think the human population of the world needs to be reduced. Guess which side of the vaccination issue they’re on. If there is indeed a connection between vaccinations and autism in extreme cases, is there no reason to believe that the normal reaction to a vaccination is to become more passive? Bill and Ted and National Geographic and the AMA and the rest of the pro-vaxx crowd has in common the belief that the world is best governed by an elite that knows “what’s best for everyone,” individual rights, whether to withhold vaccinations or to prefer self-defense to calling the cops, be damned. Do they want my grandchildren vaccinated so they will grow up to think for themselves and challenge their New World Order? Or are they hoping to increase the population of docile drones who will carry out their dictates?

Would Henry Kissinger be caught dead being called an anti-vaxxer? Methinks not. But it was Kissinger who was the genius behind at least the last few years of the Vietnam war, when thousands of Americans and hundreds of thousands of Vietnamese died needlessly. But he is still around the halls of government, still equally at home with the Bushes and the Clintons, and they all together treat the Vietnam War as some sort of holy crusade (and never mention the outcome) and beat the drum for endless war in the Mideast today, collateral damage and all. If they treat Vietnamese and Muslim lives with such contempt, what is supposed to make me think they don’t regard my life and those of my grandchildren with contempt as well?

Last but not least, there’s the anti-family, anti-freedom, anti-everything-good War on Drugs. Two nights ago yet another male treated at length to psychotropic drugs by the medical establishment went berserk and gunned nine people to death, joining the Columbine killers, the Aurora killer, and the Sandy Hook killer, plus some I’ve forgotten, in the parade of men whose brains were probably messed up and certainly not helped by legal drugs. It is, I hear, not uncommon for school guidance counselors to give parents the choice of either giving their kids drugs that will “help them behave properly” or having them expelled from school and possibly handed over to the Child Protective Services. The road from there is predictable: the body builds up resistance to the drugs, the dosage is increased, and eventually there is a paradoxical reaction that makes the headlines.

So while we have many psychotropic drug mass murders, I have yet to hear of a marijuana or even an LSD mass murder. (Marijuana dealers shooting each other doesn’t count, and if “collateral damage” is as morally defensible as “those who know what’s best for everyone” say it is, neither do innocents caught in the crossfire.) We know there’s a connection between at least some legal drugs (oh, did I mention alcohol?) and harm to innocents, but there doesn’t seem to be much evidence that connects at least some illegal drugs to mayhem. Yet which side of the marijuana prohibition issue are the pro-vaxxers on?

I know, this is all anecdote, hearsay, and innuendo. But when those who live every day with autism are convinced that vaccines are the culprit and they urge people to do their own research and think for themselves, while those who do not live with the consequences and who have shown measurable contempt for innocent life are telling us to trust them and not step out of line or else, “Better safe than sorry” seems to guide me away from vaccinations.

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