McCain Talks Nonsense about Vaccinations

By Sean Carroll | March 3, 2008 6:50 pm

Never let it be said that we ignore the Republicans! Seeking to further highlight distinctions between the parties, presumptive nominee John McCain has been on something of an anti-science tear lately. First, he dined and spoke with the Discovery Institute in Seattle — not a huge red flag by itself (there were many co-presenters, and one can’t always choose one’s lunch companions), but telling in light of his many flip-flops on teaching intelligent design in schools. (Like any good postmodern conservative, he has staked out firm positions on both sides of a wide variety of issues.)

But the latest news is much worse, as McCain panders to crackpots who believe that vaccination causes autism.

At a town hall meeting Friday in Texas, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., declared that “there’s strong evidence” that thimerosal, a mercury-based preservative that was once in many childhood vaccines, is responsible for the increased diagnoses of autism in the U.S. — a position in stark contrast with the view of the medical establishment.

The main problem with such a claim is not that just it’s untrue — it’s complete rubbish, of course, but politicians say untrue things all the time. The problem is that, unlike unfortunate choices about NASA spending priorities, in this case the stupidity can cause people to die. Hilzoy quotes the CDC on measles, which these vaccinations protect against:

Measles itself is unpleasant, but the complications are dangerous. Six to 20 percent of the people who get the disease will get an ear infection, diarrhea, or even pneumonia. One out of 1000 people with measles will develop inflammation of the brain, and about one out of 1000 will die.

Of course, McCain himself will be perfectly safe. He is arguably the most superstitious Presidential candidate of recent times, relying on a defense-in-depth strategy when it comes to lucky charms.

“I’m wearing my lucky shoes from today till Sunday,” McCain says from his bus on Wednesday. At the moment, his pockets contain the compass, feather (from a tribal leader) and penny (flattened, in his wallet). When McCain once misplaced his feather, there was momentary panic in the campaign, until his wife found it in one of his suits. When the compass went missing once, McCain assigned his political director to hunt it down. Weaver found it, and it remains safe, knock wood.

Primary day requires additional rituals. By the time you read this, Steve Dart, McCain’s lucky friend, should have arrived in South Carolina from California. He has been present with McCain for every Election Day since McCain first won a seat in Congress. McCain must sleep on a certain side of the bed, particularly before an election (and he never puts a hat on a bed–bad luck). Rain is good for Election Day, as are motion pictures. McCain requires himself to view a movie before the vote is counted. He fell asleep in his hotel room in New Hampshire before he watched a movie on primary day, but his staff didn’t panic. “We have superstition fire walls,” says Todd Harris, a spokesman.

I presume that one of his first initiatives as President will be to provide lucky compasses, feathers, and pennies to young children throughout this great land, which will keep them safe from those nasty viruses. Ready to lead on day one.

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Science and Politics
  • tacitus

    Compare and contrast with the leadership of the Conservative Party in the UK:

    Tory MP plans civil partnership

    Alan Duncan is to become the first Conservative MP to enter into a civil partnership – often described as a “gay wedding” – later this year.

    The shadow business secretary, 50, proposed to James Dunseath, 39, a press officer in the City, on 14 February while the pair were on holiday in Oman.

    “James joked that if I had not asked him on Valentine’s Day, he would have asked me on Feb 29,” Mr Duncan said.

    Tory leader David Cameron said he was “thrilled” for Mr Duncan.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/politics/7274505.stm

    Get that? The leader of the Tory Party himself congratulating a gay MP on getting hitched. Now, imagine John McCain or any Republican candidate (or Democratic candidate for that matter) even hinting at such a thing. It just another example of how far we still have to go in this country before the sanity of science (and common sense) is no longer the exception, but the rule.

  • http://-- Stan

    Unfair — the issue isn’t vaccination, which McCain favors, it’s thimerosol, which only recently was reported to be “definitively” not tied to autism. I didn’t know that negatives could be so definitively proven.

    We don’t really know McCain’s ideas on science, other than that he is NOT a knee jerk opponent of stem cell research.

    As far as his superstitions, I hope this was written with love, not derision. There is NOTHING that McCain can believe, no rabbit’s foot he can carry, that matches the faith based presidency of the current regime.

  • jeff

    Superstitions don’t bother me near as much as hardcore faith issues, except if they’re taken too seriously, which could arguably be the case here. And McCain’s kowtowing to nutjobs is an even more weighty issue. But what is it with these GOP dudes? First Reagan and astrology, and now McCain and his lucky feathers. Must be a spooky quantum thing. What happens when your mind decoheres?

  • BenE

    Mumps make adult male’s testicles swell up painfully, squeezing them sometimes to the point of permanent infertility. I know because there has been a small epidemic around here because of too many people not vaccinated. Thank god I was vaccinated.

  • Elliot

    It’s funny having had the measles, mumps, and chicken pox as a child, these diseases didn’t really seem that bad. Now german measles has always been associated with birth defects.

    I found it interesting that as soon as a chicken pox vaccine was developed, this became a much more serious disease than it had been previously.

    hmmm..

    Notwithstanding this poke at the fear based marketing techniques of major pharmaceutical companies, there does not appear to be any credible evidence that mercury additives to vaccines increase the incidence of autism.

    e.

  • Rob

    Having almost died from measles as a child and having hearing problems for some years afterwards I have little sympathy for the anti-vaccination crowd. Several years ago when I was a high school teacher we had a couple of teachers off sick with whooping cough, caught from an unvaccinated student. Although they had been vaccinated as children their immunity had dropped.

  • Moshe

    McCain would be interesting to watch (from a spectator sports viewpoint), since his public image is miles away from his real positions, and probably pretty far from where he wants it to be at this point. I suspect then that the reports about his maverick positions (standing up to the scientific establishment), and the cute little stories about his superstitions, all those stories were likely fed to the media by his campaign, not by his opponents.

  • http://kea-monad.blogspot.com Kea

    ##%$%$*((((((G%#*%TG%( – bah!! Sorry about that. I have a family issue with this particular idiocy.

  • Khurram

    He is trying to win the presidency so, of course, he has to pander to the republican base. He needs them to win. But there is no way that he will do things like fight to stop childhood vaccinations or introduce a ban on gay marriage etc etc. He is moderate and a lot saner than most republicans.

  • Arnaldo

    There are evidences that connects autism with vaccination. That doesn’t mean it (vaccination) does cause autism, but I don’t think anyone has enough information to make an statement saying that it doesn’t.

    Vaccination on US and other first-world countries it’s way less likely to cause damages than in third-world ones, as most of us (brazilians, for instance) don’t have access to the best vaccines available, we are far from that…

    Please read: “The Vaccine-Autism Court Document Every American Should Read”: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-kirby/the-vaccineautism-court-_b_88558.html

    I have no scientific knowledge to properly argue on that, but I found myself obligated to comment, since most of this post is untrue.

    Anyway, this is a great blog. Thanks for your time spreading nice information.

  • http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/cosmicvariance/sean/ Sean

    There is more than enough information to state that vaccination doesn’t cause autism. See here or here, for example. Scientific studies are what matter, not anecdotes related in court documents.

  • Reginald Selkirk

    There is NOTHING that McCain can believe, no rabbit’s foot he can carry, that matches the faith based presidency of the current regime.
    So? He’s not running against Bush. He’ll be running against the Democratic nominee and Ralph Nader.

  • Lawrence B. Crowell

    Around 2001 I found out that my son had been given vaccinations with thimerosal, which is ethylated mercury. Upon learning about this I imagine there was a “thunk” as my jaw dropped to the floor. “What?! You mean they use a compound of Mercury in vaccines?!” I subsequently discovered that those red colored antispetics I recall from my early youth under the brand names mercurichrome and merthyolate were similar to thimerisol. I was frankly rather dumbstruck.

    Subsequently the issue has gone into a bit of a muddle. As things stand there is no credible evidence that thimerisol causes autism. Mercury is not a compound with any biologically necessary properties, other than certain polypeptides genetically coded to encapsulate lead and mercury atoms in order to expel them. I will have to say that it might be wise if we don’t ingest or introduce into our bodies compounds made with mercury, which goes also for cadmium, lead, arsenic, polonium, uranium … . This is even if the chemical form of the metal is tested to be “neutral” in mice or other laboratory animals. So while thimerisol has not been identified as a source for autism I do think that we should prevent the use of mercury and lead (lead shows up in all sorts of places) in ways that these can be introduced into our bodies.

    Thimerisol might not be linked to anything, but I still put the use of this in vaccines in my “bad idea file.”

    I read a book years ago titled “The Virus House,” written I think by Manchester. It was about the German nuclear program during WWII run by Heisenberg and Hahn. One bit was on how as a sideline there was a promotion for the use of thorium in toothpaste! Imagine the folly of that, throrium laced toothpaste.

    Lawrence B. Crowell

  • George

    McCain is also an ID advocate. Can we tolerate another era of ignorance?

  • SLC

    Re Stan

    For the information of Mr. Stan, thimerisol was removed from most vaccines by 2002

    Re Lawrence B. Crowell

    Thimerisol was added to vaccines prior to 2002 as a preservative so that vaccines would have a longer shelf life.

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  • Odani of the Streets

    Well, there went the chances of rational choice at NASA.

  • robb

    Whatever the media’s stance on Thimerisol and how it was reported has everything to do with an intense Drug Industry PR blitz and little to do with the evidence.

    There is literature supporting both a correlation and no correlation with Autism rates on the books, but Pharma is making sure that anyone questioning the use of Thimerisol with being ‘anti-vaccination.’ Just like you just did. We don’t know what causes autism.

  • http://www.autismfathers.com Curt

    Good for McCain! Ask yourselves, why the New York Times is willing to go out and conduct a study of mercury in tuna if affluent Manhattanites could be harmed, but the Gray Lady is unwilling to report on a court case about mercury in vaccines when the Federal Government ADMITS a girl was harmed. Do you honestly think the U.S. Gov’t would ADMIT vaccines caused a child’s autism if there was NO scientific evidence to support it? If you don’t believe it, you can read the actual court opinion here: autismfathers.com
    -Curt

  • http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/cosmicvariance/julianne Julianne

    Curt — If mercury in vaccines was a dominant cause of autism, then autism rates should have fallen after thimerisol was pulled from vaccines in 2002. They didn’t.

    Not that I’m saying injecting kids with mercury was a Good Thing. I also would have been more than pleased if switching vaccine preservatives could have halted the autism epidemic. The evidence now suggests that the solution will not be so simple.

  • jeebus

    Curt, Robb, (et al.) -

    Ethylated mercury (thimerosal) is NOT like the mercury compounds we are worried about being in our food, soil. etc. I understand that to a parent, the word “mercury” can be scary, but this is not just “injecting kids with mercury.” The science (i.e. the NON-correlation) has been understood for a long time. And, as others have mentioned, thimerosal has not been in vaccines for several years. Where is the corresponding decrease in autism?

    Please, take a look at what the actual professionals have to say about it:

    1) Dales L, Hammer SJ, Smith NJ. Time trends in autism and in MMR immunization coverage in California. JAMA 2001;285:1183-1185.

    2) Kaye JA, Melero-Montes M, Jick H. Mumps, measles, and rubella vaccine and the incidence of autism recorded by general practitioners: a time trend analysis. BMJ 2001;322:460-463.

    3) Madsen KM, Hviid A, Vestergaard M, et al. A population-based study of measles, mumps, and rubella vaccination and autism. N Engl J Med. 2002;347:1477-1482.

    4) Michael E Pichichero, Elsa Cernichiari, Joseph Lopreiato, John Treanor. Mercury concentrations and metabolism in infants receiving vaccines containing thiomersal: a descriptive study.
    The Lancet – Vol. 360, Issue 9347, 30 November 2002, Pages 1737-1741

    5) Taylor B, Miller E, Farrington P, et al. Autism and measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine: no epidemiologic evidence for a causal association. Lancet 1999;353:2026-2029.

    6) Thompson WW et al. Early thimerosal exposure and neuropsychological outcomes at 7 to 10 years. N Engl J Med 2007 Sep 27; 357:1281.

    7) Institute of Medicine, Immunization Safety Review Committee. Immunization Safety Review: Thimerosal-Containing Vaccines and Neurodevelopmental Disorders. Stratton K, Gable A, McCormick M, eds. Washington, DC: National Academies Press; 2001

    Also check out these two web pages:

    American Academy of Pediatrics:
    http://www.aap.org/profed/thimaut-may03.htm

    Genetic basis of Autism:
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez?db=PubMed&cmd=Retrieve&list_uids=7792363

  • http://www.smugbaldy.com Smug Baldy

    There is NOTHING that McCain can believe, no rabbit’s foot he can carry, that matches the faith based presidency of the current regime.

    Oh, c’mon Stan. It’s a well established pattern in most social circles that, just when we thought we’ve plumbed the depth of a particular brand of stupid, someone comes along with the new and improved stupid that naturally leaves the rest of us in shock and awe.

  • http://countiblis.blogspot.com Count Iblis

    I’ve read that the chances of getting an autistic child are higher when both parents are engineers or scientists (only the “hard” sciences like physics count, not social sciences).

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  • Lawrence B. Crowell

    This is sort of irrelevant. Barring some unforseen problem I think the Dem will smack the snot out of McCain. This election should be a total landslide.

    Lawrence B. Crowell

  • http://www.website.com Yahoo

    It’s ok. Soon one of McCain’s advisers will tell us all that it was all just for political consumption in the US, and he doesn’t really mean it.
    I mean, it works for the Idealistic One. Even when He sounds like a xenophobic redneck talking about something really important, like trade.

  • Elliot

    Lawrence,

    Yeah it should be. If Hillary doesn’t blow it for us by throwing Obama under the bus to save her failing campaign.

    She needs to do whats good for the party not what she thinks is good for her.

    e.

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  • Nick

    Having Mumps as a child has left me azospermatic.
    Ivf has cost me $30,000 so far but we have twins on the way. :)

    They WILL be getting the MMR vaccine.

  • Lawrence B. Crowell

    Elliot on Mar 5th, 2008 at 1:04 am
    Lawrence,

    Yeah it should be. If Hillary doesn’t blow it for us by throwing Obama under the bus to save her failing campaign.

    She needs to do whats good for the party not what she thinks is good for her.

    —————-

    I would not write Obama off yet. He has a substantial margin still. Yesterday’s results just keeps Hillary in the running, but she has a long way to go before she can clearly turn this around. Obama also may well have picked up more delegates in the Texas Causcuses. If McCain gets the national election I can only conclude that Americans are a brainless and fickle population of slobs. The biggest thing about Hillary I don’t like is that she is the perfect Dem candidate the GOP dirty tricksters can run through their human-paper shredder (people enter one end, sheds come out the other end — a system used to shred candidates and citizens as well).

    Lawrence B. Crowell

  • http://countiblis.blogspot.com Count Iblis
  • jeff

    If McCain gets the national election I can only conclude that Americans are a brainless and fickle population of slobs.

    More brainless than fickle. But americans have always been slobs. I fear that this country is going to get the president it deserves. Things will get much worse and the dollar will plunge even further, and we’ll become the third world country we always wanted to be. But nothing lasts forever – even Rome fell. I’m just angry at myself for not leaving four years ago when I had the chance. Obviously, I’m just as brainless. I’d be much safer now (and richer) in a place like canada or new zealand.

  • Elliot

    I don’t think Americans are fickle or brainless. I think that Karl Rove and friends have diabolically created a mindset where Americans vote out of fear that something bad will happen vs. a hope that something good will happen. That is the cycle that needs to be broken and that is why I am a fervent Obama supporter.

    e.

  • http://countiblis.blogspot.com Count Iblis

    Some time ago I read about possible genetic differences in people who are more right wing oriented compared to left wingers. An extreme example in closely related animal species are chimps vs. bonobos. Although they are evolutionary very close, chimps will start to fight much faster than bonobos.

  • SLC

    Re Arnaldo

    David Kirby is a phony from phonyville who has been completely discredited. See the attached link from Dr. Orac which is one of many debunkings of Mr. Kirby he has posted.

    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2008/03/best_line_about_david_kirby_ive_heard_in.php

  • James Nightshade

    Count,

    If you like that kind of study, try reading up on the Jukes and the Kallikaks. It should be right up your alley.

  • Lawrence B. Crowell

    Theodor Adorno did a study where his research found that about 25% of people have what he termed the authoritarian personality, and published a book with that title back in 1950. The authoritarian personality is a feature of someone who has a near obsessive worship of those in authority or a drive to achieve such a position. This was found in reference to a study on how the Nazi party in Germany gained absolute power. An interesting corollary is that about 25% of people in the wake of Nixon’s resignation thought that Nixon was the victim of a left wing conspiracy. The main difficulty is that people with this sort of mentality very often do work their way into government and other positions of power. This extends IMO to the media, where the talking heads on TV, particularly FOX network programs and such intellectual giants as Hannity and O’Reilly (just shut up!), shout down critics of the current administration and boast about how they are “always right.” Of course there is Anne Coulter, who really belongs in a mental hospital instead of on TV.

    It is uncertain whether this is genetic, though if that turns out to be the case I would not be surprised. It think there is some cultural element in America which follow this trend. The early North American colonies were settled by the Puritans, called roundheads back in Britain, who formed their own theocracy here, and back in Britain had their days of fun with Cromwell. Religion I think tracks this sort of mentality. Note the large number of Biblical references of the righteous man or people being sheep or putting on “the yoke.” God is a sort of imaginary person, who is the ultimate authority figure. God is often referred to in an authoritarian manner such as Lord and in many Jewish prayers God (Adonia) is referred to as “Melech,” Hebrew for King. So anyone who says that Jesus is their Lord and Savior I suspect they have an authoritarian personality, and note how many are ardent conservatives. This is intertwined with a curious libertarianism of sorts, as seen with the strange gun culture that pervades our society. It is a sort of oddball idea of individual freedom through an instrument where the individual may assert themselves with brute power. The NRA types tend to vote ultra-conservative and back Bushian politics.

    The American mentality is also in my opinion rather paranoid. The McCarthy period was a case of pure social hysteria fueled by an alcoholic maniac in Congress. Americans are very fearful of many things, and we even have a TV advertizement system which preys on people’s fears. We have all met people who are afraid of strange things, such as vacinnes. It is easily exploited as well, and Bush has managed to convince Americans to be horridly fearful of Islamic miscreants hiding out in Afghan/Pakistan border region mountainous caves in order to nearly double pentagon bugets and get us into an occupation war in Iraq.

    Lawrence B. Crowell

  • http://bodbrain.blogspot.com Aaron

    My son was diagnosed with Asperger’s last year. After explaining this to a friend, he asked me if I believed that vaccinations had caused his autism. The person that asked me was considering forgoing vaccinations for his children. I told him I believed that Autism was absolutely genetic and I explained to him some of the science behind it.

    I am deeply troubled by this controversy and its refusal to subside in the face of hard science (I cover the issue and current Autism science in this post: http://bodbrain.blogspot.com/2008/01/eli-stone-and-marvelous-children.html). One of the major problems with this issue lingering is that real, important, and critical science is being drowned out in the media.

    In addition, there is also an incomplete understanding of autism in the mainstream. The behavorial and neurological problems receive so much attention in the media, but the gastrointestinal problems that accompany Autism are rarely mentioned. These symptoms are fairly widespread among people with Autism. Early detection is discussed as critical for Autism treatment. However, for our family, there were no obvious signs of Autism until my son was four years old. But, he suffered gastrointensinal problems much earilier.
    I think that these types of problems may be a warning sign which pediatricians should investigate without necessarily alerting the parents.

    Due to these gastro problems, the side effects of the vaccinations have become confused as a cause of a disorder. Many scientists suspect that children with Autism may have trouble processing toxins that otherwise healthy children do not. As a result, autistic children may become visibly irritated or possibly sick after a vaccination. For some parents, this may be the first time that they realize something is not normal.

    This is where the media has failed. Scientists are talking about this, but it does not receive the same amount of coverage. Everytime someone writes about this subject they would do a great service by not only mentioning the studies disputing that vaccinations are a cause of autism, they also would do well to mention that gastrointensinal problems are assoiciated with Autism and this may lead to some side effects.

  • bob

    Lawrence B. Crowell:
    “The Virus House” is by David Irving; it was published in the U.S. under the title “The German Atomic Bomb”. Tendentious and not entirely trustworthy (not surprising, given the author), it has some useful information.

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  • tg

    “(Aaron) : The behavorial and neurological problems receive so much attention in the media, but the gastrointestinal problems that accompany Autism are rarely mentioned.”

    I thought Andrew Wakefield, the guy who became household name due to “MMR controversy” did suggest that gastrointestinal problems are directly related to autism.

    But is there a definite proof that

    “(Aaron) : children with Autism may have trouble processing toxins that otherwise healthy children do not.”

    If yes, then a skeptic may say that a particular vaccine (be it MMR or something containing thiomersal) which leads to gastro problems would eventually make a child susceptible to autism.

    ??

  • http://bodbrain.blogspot.com Aaron

    TG: Regarding Andrew Wakefield. I think that many in the Autism field have recognized that people with Autism often have co-morbid gastro problems. The problem is that it is difficult to discern this from media reports or find information about it on the Web.

    When my son was diagnosed, the neuropsychologist did not have much insight regarding the gastro problems. Then, when I first started to seek information about this Andrew Wakefield was one of the most accessible sources. As I dug deeper, I found that connection between gastro problems and Autism was widely accepted. However, this was not easy to discover.

    This is the problem I have. Many parents with Autistic children probably wonder whether their child’s gastro problems are related to Autism. However, it is very likely that the first source of information they encounter is Andrew Wakefield. They are then led to believe that the gastro problems led to the Autistic symptoms. Wakefield recommends very radical diets. Others recommend chelation, which it is unclear whether it is helpful and may actually be harmful.

    Instead of being a cause of Autism, the gastro problems are strong indicator that it is a genetic disorder. According to Dr. Nancy Minshew, genetic disorders rarely are expressed in only one system. Generally, they affect many functions of the body. In the case of Autism, there are the neurological impacts (including behaviors impacts, social impacts, sensory impacts), the gastro impacts, and the immunological impacts. It is a whole body disorder. This is the information that should be getting out there.

    “(TG) a skeptic may say that a particular vaccine (be it MMR or something containing thimersal) which leads to gastro problems would eventually make a child susceptible to autism.”

    My son was born in 2001. I am not sure that he received a vaccine with thimerosal. We noticed his gastro problems long before we realized that he had Autism. Therefore, you could infer that the vaccinations caused the gastro problems and that “caused” Autism.

    However, I do not subscribe to this scenario. The onset of the constipation relates to his potty-training. He was somewhat difficult to potty-train. His problems first started when we went on vacation. He was away from home. He possibly became dehydrated and then was eating a somewhat unbalanced diet. I think without the routines of home and because of his sensory problems (he is under-sensitive and under-stimulated), he did not attend to his duties and became very sick.

    His pediatrician noticed that he was somewhat withdrawn and quiet at his two-year check-up. Our first constipation incident occurred when he was three. The trouble is that I think parents may notice signs of Autism much earlier than they are willing to admit to themselves or that they could only realize in retrospect. His constipation was not vaccine-related. Neither is his Autism. In many cases, it is a subtle disorder that becomes obvious only when children mature.

    There is so much incredible science occurring right now in this field. The unfortunate part is that it is drowned on by a single question: Are vaccinations the cause?

  • Jane

    The original article on this issue was cheap and uninformed – not up to your usual standard. It unfairly lumps people who are skeptical about the benefits of the range of vaccinations offered to children in North America together with the wildly superstitutious, neoconservative crazies etc. that it makes your crowd feel good to poke fun at. A more intelligent article would have reflected on the influence of money in the vaccine and medical research industry, which surely is not the one field of endeavor in our society immune (ha, ha) to the role of money and politics. The MMR- Autism scare in my view is a rare case where regular people, families of children affected by autism, were able to demand change and get the medical establishment to pay attention to the scourge of autism (affecting 1 in 4 boys and 1 in 8 girls) which until the widespread reaction to the Andrew Wakefield study in the Lancet, the medical research community was more or less ignoring. Through internet networking and spreading the stories of their personal experiences witnessing the kinds of reactions to vaccines that some of the earlier comments above attest to (possibly related gastro-intestinal sensitivity to compounds in the vaccinne as the post above suggests), parents of children with autism pushed people to withdraw their consent to have their children vaccinated, causing a public health crisis in some countries and finally pushing the medical research community to respond with some serious studies of this issue. Calling this group fear mongerers is both cheap and socially irresponsible, as is not recognizing that the diseases that get attention in our society are the ones where drug companies can envision big profits. We know this so why do we put our faith in the public health authorities so completely on the issues of vacinnes? Now our children are being vacinnated for all kinds of illnesses (chicken pox, 3 variants of meningicocal and now the new HPV campaign which in Canada has been abruptly called off because of serious adverse reactions in girls and a seeming ‘rush to market’. As well, many of these vacinnes have limited duration and these generations may indeed need a chicken pox booster at a later point, yet we all rush in to take the next miracle vaccine offered to us by the drug companies… in this case skepticism about the “public health party line” has led to positive outcomes, much more serious research on the alarming rise in autism levels that coincided with the introduction of the MMR.

  • John Fryer

    Rob Mar 3rd HITS THE BULLS EYE

    An unvaccinated student gets an illness and then gives it to the vaccinated people.

    Vaccines to him are a myth.

    Have a vaccine and you get protection for a couple of years ONLY.

    RIGHT ON!

    But illness at an early age is better managed than at an older age.

    Everyone gets loads of colds – NO PROBLEM

    But old folks getting colds – begins to be a problem.

    Before it was nothing but now it gets worse.

    We DO NEED vaccinations.

    We dont NEED vaccinations to stop GLUE EAR and DIARHOEA caused by other vaccines.

    We NEED a few vaccines for MAJOR problems – Smallpox et al.

    We dont need BRAIN DESTROYING additives in our vaccines.

    John Fryer

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Cosmic Variance

Random samplings from a universe of ideas.

About Sean Carroll

Sean Carroll is a Senior Research Associate in the Department of Physics at the California Institute of Technology. His research interests include theoretical aspects of cosmology, field theory, and gravitation. His most recent book is The Particle at the End of the Universe, about the Large Hadron Collider and the search for the Higgs boson. Here are some of his favorite blog posts, home page, and email: carroll [at] cosmicvariance.com .

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