"Tivo-ifies the web" Paul Kedrosky

Vaccination – The Hidden Truth

This terrible movie is another great example of FEBL (Fucking entertaining Big Lie) media. For some reason, in recent years a bio-luddite movement has formed against one of the greatest, proven, scientific discoveries in medicine and biggest sources of the relief of global suffering, the process of vaccination. A growing cult has chosen to identify vaccination as some kind of grandiose conspiracy and in doing so, they are engendering paranoia and endangering lives.

The format of this paranoia is very similar to both the Scientologists war on psychiatry or Evangelicals war on Darwinism. Rather like the fact that there are a small minority of biologists who believe in Intelligent Design, this documentary shows the views of some of a small minority of physicians who have problems with vaccination. There are risks with vaccination as there are with almost any medical procedure, and people who do not believe in it, but that does not mean that vaccination does not work, or that the benefits so vastly outweigh the risks that they are overwhelmingly worth it.

In the United States, the place of Tom Cruise for a war on physicians rather than psychiatrists, is taken by the quack radio host, Gary Null (who is not in this Australian documentary but is a popular anti-vaccination extremist). Null’s method is to setup vaccination as some kind of faceless government conspiracy compared with touchy feely alternative medicine, an argument which he delivers with a pleasant, soft, reassuring voice. This is an easy way to persuade people, because it is not comparing like with like.

Rather like the way that natural child birth surrounded by candles is a preferable environment to a sterile linoleum floored hospital room, but is a more dangerous one, vaccination only works if everyone does it, so vaccination tends to be delivered through the somewhat anti-septic environment of government organized vaccination programs. It is because government programs tend to be more faceless and sterile than private ones that they raise the suspicions of those who are susceptible to paranoia and equate truth with personal desirability.

The solution to damping this paranoia was spectacularly shown when we visited our pediatrician, Michel Cohen, as group of prospective parents, before our son was born. At the end of a question and answer session, one man said that he was wary of governments and therefore wary of vaccination. Dr Cohen’s answer was that although it should be the man’s choice what to ultimately do, vaccination was not so much about the individual as about the community.

By replacing society and government with ‘community’, telling the guy he had a choice and implying that lack of vaccination put the individual before the community, i.e. was selfish, Dr Cohen had pulled a Gary Null. He had expressed something in comforting terms, but this time it happened to be the truth. Brilliant, quite brilliant.

Vaccination Information Service/Taycare Pty Ltd
45 min 20 sec Jan 20, 2008


FEBL, religion, science

14 comments on “Vaccination – The Hidden Truth

  1. Eric TF Bat says:

    Rather like the way that natural child birth surrounded by candles is a preferable environment to a sterile linoleum floored hospital room but is a more dangerous one…

    You want to watch that metaphor, I think. If you have no idea what you’re doing, natural childbirth is riskier than going to a hospital, but only because hospitals are filled with people who do know what they’re doing. So that’s an apples-vs-oranges comparison right there. Natural childbirth with competent people is, by definition, less dangerous than going to a big air-conditioned building filled with antibiotic-resistant airborne diseases and doctors who feel pressured by legal issues to get a lot more active than they strictly need to. It’s only the presence of medical expertise that makes the difference, and if you have medical expertise amid the candles, natural childbirth wins.

    Apart from that: good points. Will watch.

  2. admin says:

    Excellent point .

    Although I would argue that part of the benefit of being in a hospital is not just the people but the ability to access large pieces of expensive and often immobile equipment, or to pass people to specialists should things go wrong.

    This could require an army of people and devices to replicate at home, such that it would be a lot more cost effective to make the interior furnishings of delivery rooms more domestic and personal.

    In other words, apples = decoration and oranges = equipment and staff. Make the Hospital be decorated more like a home than a home be equipped like a hospital.

    Of course nice decoration doesn’t do anything to get rid of viruses or bacteria, so on that issue, I concede.

  3. james says:
  4. OilMonkey says:

    I wouldn’t be so quick to bash Luddites, as is the haughty fashion of the modern human primate.

    Reality is doing quite the bang up job of proving Thoreau correct:

    “Our inventions are wont to be pretty toys, which distract our attention from serious things. They are but improved means to an unimproved end.”

    This is not to say I disagree with you regarding FEBLs. You do an excellent job debunking the insidious, counterproductive nature of conspiradroid religion.

    But I think one glaring fact is becoming abundantly clear, from fuel to food to water and beyond, the modern human primate’s mythology of infinite growth (speaking of FEBLs) is increasingly constrained by a finite planet while we bury our heads deeper in the sand in response.

    We are little more than children playing with toys, oblivious to the world around us.

    In this sense, Luddites are more insightful than ever.

  5. Johnson says:

    Two things, first home birth is safer because for two reasons; less unnecessary intervention and control of a pregnant woman’s birth experience and a good midwife never allows a high-risk or even moderately risky patient to deliver at home or in their birthing center. Secondly, and thankfully, vaccinations are not necessary for everyone, it is only necessary that enough of us are willing to have our children vaccinated to produce a herd immunity. That’s why I don’t typically worry to much about those that refuse vaccinations. The real shame is that home births could save us hundreds of millions of dollars just as vaccinations have done. When you consider that a hospital birth, without the complications they often create, can cost from three to ten times as much as a home birth insurance companies should cover the entire cost of a home birth as an incentive for low risk mother’s to give birth outside of hospitals. Our last child, born at home, cost about $3,500. This included all pre and post natal care. We paid only about $700 out of pocket.

  6. D Donahue says:

    The issue for me has less to do with what represents the best approach to childbirth and everything to do with ensuring that regardless of choice, competent people are there to attend and that the method of choice is ultimately decided upon based on what’s best for the child and not a parent’s political or spiritual agenda.
    I my case, my partner, right up until my son’s birth, ensured me that qualified midwives were indeed set to attend his birth and I had no reason to doubt her word. When she went into labour, there were no midwives to be had and at that point was told they had notified her that they wouldn’t attend the birth as she was considered too high risk although they would assist in a hospital setting. Our son was born healthy and he’s doing well but the whole experience has been a difficult one to deal with. I respect her choices and was supportive of them but there comes a point where the birth of a child involves far more than what’s right for the mother and is predicated upon her willingness to set aside personal agendas in the interest of all who
    are ultimately to impacted by her decisions. I simply ask that regardless of the choices we make, that they’re
    made with clarity and based on sound information and advice. As a father, I’m expected to be there and indeed always will but the process of parenting begins long before childbirth and thus we all have a right
    to fully appreciate what in fact we’re dealing with.

  7. Mark Derner says:

    You people don’t seem to have fairly appraised much of the literature of vaccine dissidents, or you would probably not hold such a biased and pro-vaccine perspective. At a time when heads of US institutions are questioning the safety of vaccinations, and US courts are finding that vaccines cause severe adverse reactions, you indeed must be putting your head deep in the sand to not notice. Why don’t you try reading some of the works from the contributors in the video? There are lots of things in their dialogues which are taken directly from the medical literature, and which demonstrate that vaccines are potentially a very unhealthy thing to expose our children to. By criticizing them you are criticizing the robust work of hundreds of scientists, and I don’t see any weight of argument on your side from what you have said. You label them as “conspiracy” and being “religious” but you seem to have the religious adherence to your skewed perspective that reinforces the mindless mantra that no matter what, “vaccines are the the most important health advance… blah blah blah”. You’re like bunnies in the headlights, zombies before live flesh, or bush before the teleprompter. Nobody home. I would like to see the thousands of angry parents that have seen their perfectly healthy children regress into full blown autism right after vaccines to come to your front door and hold you accountable for the crap you put up on the web.

  8. admin says:

    Are you out of your mind?

    Vaccination has provably, beyond any doubt, eradicated diseases that have previously killed millions.
    That some vaccinations may have side effects such as autism is like claiming that cancer treatment is evil because it gives you a headache.

    This is not one of those areas where patience and understanding of others is a virtue. Like people who hold racist or violent viewpoints, people who are ideologically against vaccination are a danger to society.

    The pernicious anti-vaccination meme has resulted the return of ailments such as whooping cough putting the well being of entire communities at risk because of selfish ignorance. These are not the actions of people responsible enough to rear children.

  9. scott lloyd says:

    did you really watch the video?
    facts are facts.
    let us not be dogmatic here.
    would you consider watching the video again, and really listen and look at the facts. not the emotional stuff, but the facts.

  10. scott lloyd says:

    about childbirth in hospitals vs home.
    do you think that in the provinces in canada, midwives won over the government because they were a bigger well oiled machine that came to the courts with millions and persuasive ‘medical experts’? no they were not. they came with simple undeniable statistics…unargueable truths.
    to make blanket statements here without facts is again….emotional jargon and dogmatic.

    back to vaccinations…read up on the facts…it is not cut and dry like you state it to be. and the anti mandatory vaccination groups are much more than anti-government or conspiracy theorists or religious freaks…they are very important groups mostly sprung out of parents whose children have been injured or have died after vaccinations. and also, it is not about government, it is about greed…enough is enough – mandatory hep B vaccines ??? why, it is only contracted through sex or needles.
    mandatory flu vaccines…what a joke…did you ever work in a clinic who gave flu vaccines and track the results, I have…it is a joke – less than 40% effective.
    mandatory hpv vaccines, why? again only contracted through sex.
    is there no profit whoring here? come on. the drug companies really care about me or my kids, they really have my best interests? and the government in the us is not swayed by big money? lobbyists have no influence in our legislation? quite the contrary, we have become a republic of people who don’t exercise our right to change legislation, instead the lobbyists took our place.

    it is not cut and dry, and to make it so on your blog is very non-objective. let’s look at the facts, and again, I will refer you back to the video, because it is a good place to start (the facts, not the emotional stuff, the facts, they are in the video).

  11. admin says:

    @Scott My stance with anti-vaccination promoters is the same as Richard Dawkins’ with creationists, there is really no point in me arguing with you. Your mind is closed, and frankly people like yourself are a danger to society.

  12. CHRIS says:

    If you are vaccinated there should be no fear of those who are not. Im of the belief that the risks outweigh the benefits. The majority of the diseases that we vaccinate against are not even fatal. Why would anyone choose to be against vaccinations and claim a conspiracy to their own detriment or the detriment of their own children. It seems very counter productive. I can’t think of any reason a parent would risk the well being of their child just for the opprotunity to jump aboard a conspiracy band wagon. It’s like standing up for a lie for which you would be killed, rather than just admitting that you lied. Before you attack those that don’t think its a good idea to vaccinate, you might want to check your logic, or at least do some research from the opposite side of the debate.

    1. admin says:

      @ Chris

      “Before you attack those that don’t think its a good idea to vaccinate, you might want to check your logic.”

      Ok lets check your logic:

      1. “If you are vaccinated there should be no fear of those who are not.”
      I am vaccinated and have reasonable fear about the resurgence of whooping cough near Woodstock, due to anti-vaccinationists, because I care about other people not just myself.

      2. “The majority of the diseases that we vaccinate against are not even fatal.”
      Medicine is not based purely on the treatment of fatal disease, that would be asinine.

      3. “Why would anyone choose to be against vaccinations and claim a conspiracy to their own detriment or the detriment of their own children.”
      For the same reason that millions of people around the word and through history have endangered themselves, their families and others because of mistaken beliefs and ideology.

      I’m sorry, but you are an idiot.

  13. aikowest0002 says:

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