Part I: HPV
Part II: Measles

Part III: More Measles

Its July 18th. A little over half-way into 2011. And in Ethiopia, about 18,000 people have gotten measles, with a touch over 100 dead.

There has also been an outbreak in Somali refugee camps in Kenya, with almost 500 sick and 11 dead.

Meanwhile, here in the US, we have antivaxers throwing money away on snake-oil to cure their children of autism (and the collection of non-medically recognized that seem to go along with seeing woo-treatment from autism experts charlatans, like OCD-like dietary rituals and paranoia about ‘multiple chemical sensitivity’), fantasizing about ‘revenge’ on those evil scientists who invented/produce/test vaccines.

Think about that kind of luxury– A group of individuals fantasizing about torture and death, while another group of individuals just has to open their eyes see torture and death all around them. Parents *angry* with the government for making sure kids are vaccinated, while another group of parents can do nothing to to get their kids vaccines that will keep their children healthy and *alive*.

We have it good.

Better than some people deserve.


  1. #1 dustbubble
    July 19, 2011

    Oi! When are these peeps going to stop dossing about and sling a few AGM-129’s in?
    To save us and all. It’s pretty much compulsory here, along with all the others, e.g. They’re trying to get a grip of HPV now. And it’s free (at point of use)!
    The horror! Won’t somebody think of the children?

    Maybe all this vaxing is why we’re all idiots.
    Can’t be the inbreeding, can it, eh?

  2. #2 dustbubble
    July 19, 2011

    Bah! Tags Fail. How cool is that?
    Here ya go.

  3. #3 TylerD
    July 19, 2011

    It’s a weird sociological phenomenon that once a rumor gets out and gains traction, there is no stopping it no matter what evidence emerges that it is. Wakefield’s bogus study was basically the Roswell incident of antivaccionism.

    There is also great work being done on the genomics of autism that is being overlooked partly because of this disgusting saga.

  4. #4 TylerD
    July 19, 2011

    “It’s a weird sociological phenomenon that once a rumor gets out and gains traction, there is no stopping it no matter what evidence emerges that it is [false]. Wakefield’s bogus study was basically the Roswell incident of [antivaccinationism.]”

    *Fixed. That’s what I get for being awake for 36 hours after I stupidly let one of my medications run down.

  5. #5 Poodle Stomper
    July 19, 2011

    And sadly, we were right on track to have measles eradicated completely, too. Good job antivaxxers, you’ve just doomed us to extra years of needing the measles vaccine. Ironic, eh?

  6. #6 Prometheus
    July 19, 2011


    “It’s a weird sociological phenomenon that once a rumor gets out and gains traction, there is no stopping it no matter what evidence emerges that it is.”

    Well said, Joel Best’s version is,

    “A bad statistic is harder to kill than a vampire.”

    As always, I blame Twilight fans.

  7. #7 Bacopa
    July 19, 2011

    I just want to take the antivaxers to an old graveyard and do a little math. Subtract birth dates from death dates to see how many kids there are. Then go to a graveyard build after the fifties to see how many fewer kids there are. What do you think made most of the difference?

  8. #8 Justicar
    July 20, 2011

    Bacopa, about a month or so ago, Richard Dawkins’ website put up a news article about someone doing that very thing in Oregon. It deals with their passing a law removing the religious defense from children dying of neglect of medical treatment, specifically excluding “faith healing” and that kind of woo from immunizing parents whose children die.

    A reporter, IIRC, did a piece where he just counted up the rows of dead children’s headstones a particular set of parents had to walk by to bury their child who died from some entirely curable illness. One round of antibiotics would have done the trick (IIRC). I can’t recall the number of rows of dead children they had to pass, but it was heartbreaking.

    These people’s woo is so important to them that even when you starting counting its cost in the corpses of their children who could have been saved, they don’t care. They consider the high mortality rate of their children to be a blessing in disguise.

    How one defeats a position where a parent’s concern over the death of its child is seen as the silver lining is beyond my reasoning.

    We simply have to win this battle of bullshit.

  9. #9 Grant
    July 20, 2011

    We’ve our own little (or not so little) measles outbreak in Auckland. 72 cases, 5 hospitalised so far; most of those affected have had no vaccinations…

  10. #10 Prometheus
    July 20, 2011

    I’m sorry to hear that Grant. Some U.S. Pediatricians have simply refused care to children of parents who refuse vaccination in order to protect the infants and children with legitimate health issues that preclude vaccination.

    Since I will soon be seeking the services of a pediatrician I will be attempting to find one with that policy.

  11. #11 mary
    July 21, 2011

    Boston saw measles this winter..had to open a temp vac clinic..horrible thing when a non vaccinated french consulate worker commutes to work on the T..

    1991, my infant son contracts whooping cough during a Canadian outbreak..survives, suffers complications to this day, 20 years later, still having surgery to try and correct a problem related to his cough..

    Our family peds will treat non vaccinated kids..However, they get seperate days and clinic space from vaccinated kids..

  12. #12 0verlord
    July 21, 2011

    It’s a weird sociological phenomenon that once a rumor gets out and gains traction, there is no stopping it no matter what evidence emerges that it is.

    Even weirder is that when you present contrary evidence to people who buy into such rumors, they don’t behave as expected. Instead of correcting their misguided beliefs, they become even more strongly convicted in them. I wonder what in human psychology drives people to behave that way. Is it a learned behavior, or must we train ourselves not to do so?

  13. #13 David
    July 23, 2011

    There was a fantastic program in the UK were Dawkins described the work of Jenner. This should be shown to all ‘anti-vaxers’. Note Jenner used pus scrapped from scabs, not modern vaccines delivered in sterile coonditions.

    Refering to Overloads concerns above, I guess he would be seen as an evil man for what he ‘did’ to that child.

    As to what drives humans to think this way, well if you truly believe, there is something in the back of our brains that makes us pliable and liable to adhere to all kinds of irrational beleifs – useful for strengthening group behaviour in primates I am sure – but a bit of an anachronism in the modern world.

    But then so is often also our unending appetite for sex.

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