A couple of weeks ago I made what I thought to be a rather obvious observation, namely that the anti-vaccine crank blog Age of Autism is anti-vaccine, not, as it claims, pro-safe vaccine. One bit of the copious evidence that belies the claim is the obsessive focus of that blog on Gardasil. Even if science hadn’t failed time and time again to find a link between vaccines and autism, even in the most fevered dreams of anti-vaccine zealots Gardasil couldn’t have anything to do with autism because it is usually administered when a girl is between 10-13, long past the age when autism is most commonly diagnosed.

So is the meningococcal vaccine.

So why, then, is Age of Autism going crazy about a proposed vaccine mandate for the meningococcal vaccine to be required before children enter seventh grade? See what they’re writing:

Urgent Calls & Faxes Needed Tomorrow, Tuesday, June 1st to
STOP new meningitis shot mandate for 7th graders in NY and to oppose Assembly Bill 10313 and Senate Bill 7156.

Tomorrow, Tuesday, June 1, 2010 you need to get in the car and come to Albany to stop an effort to sneak through yet another mandatory vaccine in New York, this time for the meningitis vaccine, for both seventh graders and college students. If you can’t make it to Albany get on the phone, fax, and click on the Take Action link above to send your legislators an email and tell your legislators to fix state government and fix the $9 billion+ deficit and pass decent autism health insurance reform rather than interfere with your families’ health decisions.

No other state, or country requires, adolescents to get this shot. Only two states, New Jersey and Connecticut require it for college students, and that’s only for students who live in dormitories.

Other anti-vaccine groups are joining the bandwagon.

Once again, what was that about Age of Autism not being “anti-vaccine”? If it’s not anti-vaccine, why the obssessive focus on Gardasil and now the rabid reaction to a meningococcal vaccine mandate for seventh graders?

It’s because when Age of Autism bloggers proclaim that they’re “not anti-vaccine,” they’re either lying or fooling themselves.

Comments

  1. #1 augustine
    June 5, 2010

    Zertec: “Then, just as I asked you before, instead of just making “woo-prattle” give us an example of any advancement in human knowledge that was produced by unscientific thinking and explain how we know that it’s correct. Surely it can’t be that hard can it?”

    Nuremberg Code. Your turn, Jesus.

  2. #2 augustine
    June 5, 2010

    Rogue: “As with a mirror, only a reflection.

    No substance.

    No depth.

    No understanding.”

    It displays your character. You attack yet you don’t even know what you attack. You’re playing in a house of mirrors, fool.

  3. #3 Sauceress
    June 5, 2010

    It’s not the method that you hate.

    and

    It is my philosophy and my views that you hate me for.

    Like the majority of the reality resistant, augie obviously can’t distinguish between hate and criticism.
    Don’t flatter yourself augie, my emotion toward you is as my emotion toward a brick or a rock. Emotion has nothing to do with it…except maybe to those whose entire world view is based on their emotions.

    But seeing as you obviously suffer a persecution complex, let me just tell you that the FSM still loves you. He really does and you’ll feel His love if only you open yourself to Him and let His Noodly Appendage come unto you. Only then will enlightenment embrace you.

    Here’s a a question for augie…

    augie, why don’t you get your own blog on where you can push your ideology and other various mental masturbations?
    Why is it you insist on using Orac’s blog to push your ideology?
    ~~~~
    Re link @192…looks like the ads constantly change…this was the one I wanted..
    Tree of Life

  4. #4 Seb30
    June 5, 2010

    Question from Zetetic 199
    “give us an example of any advancement in human knowledge that was produced by unscientific thinking and explain how we know that it’s correct.”

    The answer from Augustine
    “Nuremberg Code”

    What the heck?

    Ok, I will admit that the Nuremberg code is an advancement in human philosophy and ethics, and a very needed one, but as for knowledge?
    Also, I will not say that the judges came with these guidelines in a “unscientific thinking” mod. They reviewed data, identified causal effects and proposed an action to correct them. Hardly unscientific.

  5. #5 augustine
    June 5, 2010

    Zertec: “Thank you for admitting (yet again) that you ultimately have neither logic nor evidence to back up your position.”

    How is this for logic and evidence?
    http://www.cdc.gov/measles/about/overview.html

    999 out of 1000 cases of measles don’t die today. Yet cases are very low so deaths are very low. Statistical chance of unvaccinated immune system getting and dying of measles in a homogeneous population is tiny, very, very, tiny.

    http://web.med.unsw.edu.au/pathology/meas.pdf

    6,499 of 6500 cases didn’t die before vaccines. More than 97% of the population per year didn’t get measles.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1919891/pdf/pubhealthreporig00027-0069.pdf

    “For centuries the measles virus has maintained a remarkably stable ecological relationship with man. The clinical disease is a characteristic syndrome of notable constancy and only moderate severity. Complications are infrequent, and, with adequate medical care, fatality is rare.”

    So I like my chances of forgoing the vaccine. Based on evidence and logic. Herd immunity? If I get measles naturally then I confer lifelong immunity contributing to herd immunity. The vaccinated might not can say that. If I become infected how long am I contagious to

  6. #6 Rogue Medic
    June 5, 2010

    @ 202 augustine,

    It displays your character. You attack yet you don’t even know what you attack. You’re playing in a house of mirrors, fool.

    All you are doing is promoting ignorance.

    Fortunately, most people seem to be realizing that anti-vaccinationists just oppose protecting children from disease.

    You keep repeating your mantra that vaccines are bad.

    Children will keep dying from vaccine preventable illnesses.

    You claim that I do not know what I am doing?

  7. #7 The Very Reverend Battleaxe of Knowledge
    June 5, 2010

    I have to say “augustine’s” name is very well chosen: “God grant me sanity—but not yet!”

  8. #8 augustine
    June 5, 2010

    @seb30
    non scientific would be a better word

    Rogue medic:
    “Fortunately, most people seem to be realizing that anti-vaccinationists just oppose protecting children from disease.”

    fallacy. It is an error of logical application. Because someone does not choose to take a vaccine does not mean they want someone to get sick and die.

    Rogue medic: “You keep repeating your mantra that vaccines are bad.”

    Did I say that?

    Rogue medic: “Children will keep dying from vaccine preventable illnesses.”

    This is just rhetoric. It presumes that the death of someone from an infection for which a vaccine has been concocted would have been prevented if that person had been vaccinated. This is IMPOSSIBLE to assess for that person. In fact there is evidence to the contrary.

    Rogue medic: “You claim that I do not know what I am doing?”

    No.

  9. #9 Chris
    June 6, 2010

    Isn’t it past your bedtime, Little Augie?

  10. #10 T. Bruce McNeely
    June 6, 2010

    It presumes that the death of someone from an infection for which a vaccine has been concocted would have been prevented if that person had been vaccinated. This is IMPOSSIBLE to assess for that person. In fact there is evidence to the contrary.

    Evidence to the contrary? Let’s see it.

    Oh I forgot. You don’t “do” evidence.
    You have “other ways of knowing”. I yield to the superior power of your ass, from whence all knowledge flows.

  11. #11 Zetetic
    June 6, 2010

    augustine @ #201:

    Nuremberg Code.

    Fail. I asked for knowledge and a means of showing that it’s correct, since that is what science is about. Instead you point to an ethics guideline that attempts to balance scientific advancement with long established human morals. BTW, while I have no trouble with the code itself, in what way is it “factual” instead of a series of ethical guidelines?

    Congratulations on commuting yet another fallacy to add to your list the “Category Error“.

    ————————————————————————————————————————————–

    augustine @ #202:

    It displays your character. You attack yet you don’t even know what you attack. You’re playing in a house of mirrors, fool.

    Says the person that commits one fallacy after another, ignores contrary evidence, and continually lies about others. But never admits any error, all while accusing others that are asking for evidence to change their minds of being dogmatic.

    Projection thy name is augstine.

    ————————————————————————————————————————————–
    augustine @ #205:
    Ah! Finally we get to an argument about facts! Fun time!

    But wait didn’t I warn you about misrepresenting the works of others?

    999 out of 1000 cases of measles don’t die today. Yet cases are very low so deaths are very low. Statistical chance of unvaccinated immune system getting and dying of measles in a homogeneous population is tiny, very, very, tiny.

    You said “999 out of 1000 cases of measles don’t die today”, but what did the article you cited actually say? (I did warn you that I would read it).

    From the CDC…

    About one out of 1,000 gets encephalitis, and one or two out of 1,000 die.

    So while what you said wasn’t completely inaccurate you already tried to spin it a little bit to your favor. Besides I don’t recall anyone arguing against the position that the death rate from measles was lower in industrialized countries than in poorer regions. But you would have known that we already knew that if you read the links I provided you back in Petition thread. But, lets look at what else you left out.

    Measles is very rare in countries and regions of the world that are able to keep vaccination coverage high.

    Uh, oh. That states that vaccination lowers the rate of disease. How can that be if people are naturally protected as you stated in the other thread?

    Worldwide, there are estimated to be 10 million cases and 197,000 deaths each year. More than half of the deaths occur in India

    That’s an awful lot of dead children augie. So exactly how many dead children is considered acceptable by your standards? Please let us know how many dead kids are acceptable to you.

    More augie…

    Statistical chance of unvaccinated immune system getting and dying of measles in a homogeneous population is tiny, very, very, tiny.

    I personally think that 1/1,000 odds are a bit more than “very, very, tiny”, but that’s debatable. The question you should be asking, and keep ignoring, is what is the rate of harm in for vaccination in relation to the odds of harm for the disease? In this case what is the odds of death from the vaccine in relation to the odds of death from the disease? I notice that you avoid citing sources for the complications of vaccines and instead focus on just trying to play down the risk of the more mild diseases. Hardly intellectually honest of you, now is it augie?

    Lets compare the risk of measles death to the risk of the most serious of vaccine complication from your own second link

    Encephalopathy less than 1/1,000,000 doses

    [note: I had to use “less than” since the system was ignoring the chevron symbol for it.]

    So augie if 1-2/1,000 deaths from measles is “very, very, tiny” what is a risk of less that 1/1,000,000, and even that doesn’t necessarily mean death? How tiny would you say that is augie?

    Seriously I wonder if you actually read that few things that you’ve linked to. For example, in neither your 2nd nor your 3rd (an article from 1967? Really?) links did I find your…

    6,499 of 6500 cases didn’t die before vaccines.

    Nor did I find your…

    More than 97% of the population per year didn’t get measles.

    Odd how it seems rather at odds from this quote from you own links which state [emphasis added]…

    Before 1963, approximately 500,000 cases and 500 deaths
    were reported annually with epidemic cycles every 2-3 years.
    However, the actual number of cases was estimated at
    3-4 million annually. More than 50% of persons had measles
    by age 6 and more than 90% had measles by age 15
    .

    Gee, I guess that 3% per year really adds up doesn’t it? Funny how once again you seem to have deliberately spun the facts in order to misrepresent them and attempt to dishonestly play down the risks.

    Here’s a few more choice quotes you left out, I noticed….

    Therefore, in a country where smallpox, diphtheria, and poliomyelitis have been brought under effective control through immunization of a moderately high proportion, but by no means all infants and children, so also can measles be controlled with the attainment of immunity levels that are reasonable and wholly practical to achieve.

    Prevaccine era: virtually universal infection
    in childhood with frequent epidemics

    Postvaccine era: >98% reduction in cases

    Recent resurgence due to low vaccination coverage levels

    Measles is more severe in malnourished children, particularly those with vitamin A deficiency. Complications include diarrhea, dehydration, stomatitis, inability to feed, and bacterial infections(skin and elsewhere). The case fatality rate may be as high as 25%. Measles is also a leading cause of blindness in African children.

    Measles is highly communicable, with >90% secondary
    attack rates among susceptible persons.

    Seriously augie…do you actually read for comprehension the articles you link to? Do you just hope that we won’t read them since most anti-vaxers are too intellectually lazy to do such? Or do you just filter them through your dogma and not notice the details that contradict your own position?

    More augie prattle:

    If I get measles naturally then I confer lifelong immunity contributing to herd immunity

    If you survive it then yes, hopefully the others you infect in the meantime will survive it as well…but why should you care about them, right augie?

    So lets look at your position… in order to avoid a less than 1/1,000,000 chance of serious harm to yourself only, you’re willing to take a 1-2/1,000 chance and potentially endanger the lives of others too? How exactly is this either logical or ethical?

    The only way your position makes sense is if the odds of harm from the vaccine are greater than the odds of harm for the disease, but your own links refute that position.

    Thanks for the links though, they’ll come in handy later when arguing against other anti-vaxers. BTW augie, I noticed that you like to keep focusing on measles. What about some of the nastier diseases like polio? I noticed that you seemed to dodge that subject in the Petition thread.
    ————————————————————————————————————————————–
    augustine @ #208:

    fallacy. It is an error of logical application. Because someone does not choose to take a vaccine does not mean they want someone to get sick and die.

    The fallacy is yours augustine. Specifically the Straw-man Fallacy in this case. Rouge didn’t say in the post that anti-vaxers want children to die, but rather that people are realising that the goal of anti-vaxers is to not protect children from disease and instead rely on nature to take it’s course. You know augie, the exact same position that you had just advocated in your post @ #205.

    Once again augie you show yourself as being completely lacking in the integrity to honestly represent your opponent’s position, or lacking in the comprehension to accurately comprehend it.

    This is just rhetoric. It presumes that the death of someone from an infection for which a vaccine has been concocted would have been prevented if that person had been vaccinated.

    It’s a reasonable supposition based upon the statistics of both the disease and the vaccines, your own links earlier show that. It’s also a conclusion supported by disease statistics and there relation to vaccination rates, also shown by your 2nd link BTW. Funny how you neglected to point it out though.

    In fact there is evidence to the contrary.

    Really? As Bruce already stated…prove it. Preferably with citations from credible sources that actually support your position for a change, instead of contradicting it, and yes I will read them too.

    😉

  12. #12 squirrelelite
    June 6, 2010

    Well, augustine, Zetetic just gave you a much more thorough response than I have time for this morning.

    But, your comment that you “only mimic and mirror the posters on the board” piqued my curiosity.

    I know that you read my comment 172, because you immediately responded with 2 comments of your own and asked

    “Just how much of your doctrine influenced your interpretation of the text you just read to us?”

    I replied with comments 185 and 186, but those seemed to slip below your radar, so I will repeat a couple of statements.

    In response to your question, I answered
    “Since a lot of the comments on this thread had to do with the social agreements we make as a basis for political decisions on public health measures, I thought a little historical/philosophical background might be useful.”

    And, since your question seemed to indicate you didn’t entirely accept my interpretation of Rousseau, I asked

    “If you disagree with my explanation, perhaps you would care to state your own interpretation and explain why you think it is correct.”

    As a short review as you prepare to mimic and mirror my writing style, I suggest you read my comment 186. I noticed that Zetetic offered a similar thought to my suggestion 4 in comment 194.

    I look forward to your elucidation.

  13. #13 squirrelelite
    June 6, 2010

    Oh, and thanks to Francois T for noting that the U.S. Supreme Court also ruled on this individual freedom versus social protection issue 105 years ago!

    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2010/05/the_american_rally_for_personal_antivacc.php#comment-2568456

  14. #14 Zetetic
    June 6, 2010

    @ augustine:
    Just an after thought…It occurred to me that you might try to spin my description of the most serious side-effect listed from your own link as an attempt to ignore the possibility of an allergic response. So just to preempt that accusation here is a little tidbit about the possibility of allergic reaction to the MMR vaccine.

    Although greater than 70 million doses of MMR vaccine have been distributed in the United States since VAERS was implemented in 1990, only 33 cases of anaphylactic reactions that occurred after MMR vaccination have been reported. Furthermore, only 11 of these cases a) occurred immediately after vaccination and b) occurred in persons who had symptoms consistent with anaphylaxis (CDC, unpublished data).

    and of course a link to the source…
    Update: Vaccine Side Effects, Adverse Reactions, Contraindications, and Precautions Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP)

    So augustine out of 70,000,000 doses in the USA at the time of the article there were 33 cases of an anaphylactic reaction, of which only 11 occurred immediately after the injection (meaning that the other 22 may be unrelated).

    You do the math.

    How does that stack up against your “very, very, tiny” risk of 1-2/1,000 of deaths from measles?

  15. #15 Rogue Medic
    June 6, 2010

    @ 208 augustine,

    Rogue medic: “Children will keep dying from vaccine preventable illnesses.”

    This is just rhetoric. It presumes that the death of someone from an infection for which a vaccine has been concocted would have been prevented if that person had been vaccinated. This is IMPOSSIBLE to assess for that person. In fact there is evidence to the contrary.

    No.

    That is not what I stated.

    If herd immunity is maintained with vaccination, the chances of a child dying from the illness vaccinated against are as low as possible, short of eradication.

    As herd immunity is impaired by decreasing immunization rates, the death rate among all children, for that vaccine-preventable illness, will increase.

    If the immunization rates drop much lower, deaths from vaccine-preventable illnesses may even become common.

    The reason the deaths from vaccine-preventable illnesses are so rare is the result of herd immunity.

    Of course, death prevention is not the only reason for vaccination.

  16. #16 augustine
    June 6, 2010

    Evidence to the contrary? Let’s see it.

    Oh I forgot. You don’t “do” evidence.
    You have “other ways of knowing”. I yield to the superior power of your ass, from whence all knowledge flows.

    ———————————————————
    Person receives vaccine for rhetorical “vaccine preventable disease. Person dies. Evidence:

    http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2007/10/10/despite_vaccine_meningitis_takes_teens_life/?rss_id=Boston+Globe+–+City%2FRegion+News

  17. #17 augustine
    June 6, 2010

    Zertec:
    “Projection thy name is augstine.”

    Tu Quoque.

  18. #18 T. Bruce McNeely
    June 6, 2010

    @augie:

    A newspaper account of a single person who died of meningitis despite being vaccinated against meningitis? And what would have happened had she not been vaccinated? Yes, in a rare case, a vaccine can be ineffective. Tell us something we don’t know.
    I forgot, for you, anecdotes are everything.

    The same article states that the vaccine is 85% effective.
    This is against an illness that has a significant mortality rate (3 – 7% in adults) and a very high rate of lifelong disability:

    In children there are several potential disabilities which result from damage to the nervous system. Sensorineural hearing loss, epilepsy, learning and behavioral difficulties, as well as decreased intelligence, occur in about 15% of survivors.[1] Some of the hearing loss may be reversible.[43] In adults, 66% of all cases emerge without disability. The main problems are deafness (in 14%) and cognitive impairment (in 10%).[4]

    (from Wikipedia)

    This is why my daughters are immunized.
    [edit]

  19. #19 augustine
    June 6, 2010

    Zertec: “Fail. I asked for knowledge and a means of showing that it’s correct, since that is what science is about.”

    Do you assert that ALL knowledge IS science? Or that All of knowledge comes through scientific first principles?

    Zertec: “…an ethics guideline that attempts to balance scientific advancement with long established human morals.”

    Long established human morals? It (code) was established at this time because new scientific advancement jumped out in front of human morals… in the name of, shall I dare say it, science. OUCH!

    Zertec: “But wait didn’t I warn you about misrepresenting the works of others?”

    1+9=10; 9+1=10 What’s the problem, zertec? You might not like the way I presented it but there is no misrepresentation. It is the exact same evidence.

    CDC via zertec “Measles is very rare in countries and regions of the world that are able to keep vaccination coverage high.”

    Is vaccination the ONLY difference in the citizens of these countries? No. Malnutrition is usually a big variable, but it is not the only one. Infection rate is not problem the mortality rate and serious sequelae is the problem. These were reducing in before vaccination. Mortality rate is actually higher now with vaccines.

    Zertec: “Uh, oh. That states that vaccination lowers the rate of disease. How can that be if people are naturally protected as you stated in the other thread?”

    They are protected after the disease. Some never get the disease. You’re somehow fixated on the incidence. I’ve already told you I’m fine with a disease where “Complications are infrequent, and, with adequate medical care, fatality is rare.”

    Zertec: “For example, in neither your 2nd nor your 3rd (an article from 1967? Really?) links did I find your…6,499 of 6500 cases didn’t die before vaccines.”

    That’s because I did calculations with the data given. You just look at the conclusions given.

    zertec: “More than 97% of the population per year didn’t get measles.”

    I looked at the census and used the 1950 number of 150 million people.

    Zertec: “Gee, I guess that 3% per year really adds up doesn’t it? Funny how once again you seem to have deliberately spun the facts in order to misrepresent them and attempt to dishonestly play down the risks.”

    It’s actually less than 3%.

    zertec: “If you survive it then yes, hopefully the others you infect in the meantime will survive it as well…but why should you care about them, right augie?”

    Which is a 99.99+++ percentage. I like those odds.

    zertec: “So lets look at your position… in order to avoid a less than 1/1,000,000 chance of serious harm to yourself only, you’re willing to take a 1-2/1,000 chance and potentially endanger the lives of others too? How exactly is this either logical or ethical?”

    Which is not my value for this decision making but yours so I’ll go with your numbers. 1 out of a million (BTW do you have a citation for this number. It’s actually much higher). So what is the absolute on this. How many people get the measles vaccine in the U.S? 100 million? So now, according to your numbers, at least 100 people have a serious reaction to measles vaccine? How many actual deaths occured last year from measles? How many cases of measles related encephalitis actually occurred. Now you’ll see that the difference isn’t so profound. That’s an honest comparison.

  20. #20 Zetetic
    June 6, 2010

    @ augustine:
    What is it about those that defend irrational positions that they don’t even use accusations of logical fallacies correctly? Oh, that’s right…it’s the irrational part.

    So putting aside that you apparently have nothing of substance in my rebuttal to your list of further lies, fallacies, and misrepresentations. (As an aside. I found that “selectively” quoting an article from 1967 calling for the eradication of measles by widespread vaccination, by cherry picking the one part that you could cherry-pick to support your position, was rather amusing. Thanks for the laugh.) Would you please be so kind as to point out where exactly I’ve committed a Tu Quoque fallacy? Remember…for it to be a Tu Quoque I’d have to be accusing you of something that I myself was demonstrably guilty of. Such as you accusing others of being closed minded, while they were open to contrary evidence and you were ignoring contrary evidence. Got it? In this case all you have to do is point out an example where I was clearly “projecting”. Please do so…it should be rather amusing to see how you lie and spin to try and pull it off.

    In the meantime augie, I also see that you have yet to answer which risk is greater 1-2/1000 or 1/1,000,000. Surely it can’t be that hard a question is it?

    ————————————————————————————————————————————-

    Person receives vaccine for rhetorical “vaccine preventable disease. Person dies.

    Still unable to grasp even the most basic concepts of relative risks and probability, are you augie? How very pathetic.

  21. #21 Zetetic
    June 6, 2010

    “Person receives vaccine wears seat-belt for rhetorical “vaccine preventable disease automotive safety. Person dies.”

    See how build and foolish your statement is now augie? Of course not you’d have to be open to admitting that you’re wrong first. Can’t have that now can we?

  22. #22 augustine
    June 6, 2010

    “Person receives vaccine wears seat-belt for rhetorical “vaccine preventable disease automotive safety. Person dies.”

    See how build and foolish your statement is now augie? Of course not you’d have to be open to admitting that you’re wrong first. Can’t have that now can we?
    ———————————————————
    Did person get thrombocytopenia before making it out of their driveway?

    Zertec: “What is it about those that defend irrational positions that they don’t even use accusations of logical fallacies correctly?”

    Do you always label something irrational just because you don’t agree with it? Let me project some more. Do you think the belief in a god is irrational?
    ————————————————–

    Zertec, you’ve committed a mind numbing number of logical fallacies while attempting to engage in rhetoric and your particular view of disease, health, and the role of prophylactic medication.

    Me? I’m just a lowly virtual troll. I’m expected to make these errors because I stand for everything ignorant and irrational in the universe by the educated elite.

    You on the other hand are a professional scientist (or wannabe) who champions critical thinking and evidence. Remember who are are. Don’t let your emotions get the best of you.

  23. #23 augustine
    June 6, 2010

    Zertec: “In the meantime augie, I also see that you have yet to answer which risk is greater 1-2/1000 or 1/1,000,000. Surely it can’t be that hard a question is it?”
    ———————————————————-
    If I use YOUR risk to benefit ratio equation then at what point is it ok to NOT take a vaccine? So will you accept 499 deaths from the measles vaccine? Since this ratio changes from region to region does that matter to you or do you only use it when it works for you? What about if measles is near hypothetical extinction and there are only a few incidences left with little to zero deaths from wild measles. With billions of vaccines this equation will change and the deaths from vaccine will exceed the natural deaths. Do you shift the goalposts at this point to push the agenda or do you allow someone to use the “old” risk/benefit formula?

  24. #24 Zetetic
    June 7, 2010

    @ everyone:
    Warning everyone….it’s SIWOTI time again!

    ————————————————————————————————————————————–

    augustine @ #219:

    Do you assert that ALL knowledge IS science? Or that All of knowledge comes through scientific first principles?

    More Straw-man arguments…You augustine are the one that is going around implying that issues of medical facts and risk can be determined by “other lenses to view the world”. All I asked was for you to provide any way that such issues of fact can be determined and proven to be correct by your “other lenses”. So far you have failed to do that.

    It is as if I asked you to describe an alternative source of power and specify it’s efficiency, and you replied “Rainbows are pretty”. Well, be that as it may, it doesn’t actually answer the question. Nor did your reply backup your position there are alternatives to evidence to access whether it’s factually better to take vaccines or nor. Overall it was a pathetic attempt at a diversion on your part.

    Long established human morals? It (code) was established at this time because new scientific advancement jumped out in front of human morals… in the name of, shall I dare say it, science. OUCH

    Which refutes my point how exactly? Do you really think that people in general didn’t have any concern for human lives before the Nuremberg Code? That no researchers any where had any ethics? While we’re on the subject though augie…how much death and suffering has been caused by religion or politics? Why is science so special to you, hmmm? No, you’re still attempting to divert from your own lack of argument about the safety and efficacy of vaccines.

    1+9=10; 9+1=10 What’s the problem, zertec? You might not like the way I presented it but there is no misrepresentation. It is the exact same evidence.

    Because everything after that line shows that you deliberately cited, as evidence for your position, papers that contradict your position. Are you really that dishonest or just deluded? The closest you got to accurately representing the papers was when you said that the risk of death of measles was 1/1,000, but even there you still spun things a little and left out the 1-2/1,000. Just to do your math for you augie that means the rate of death from measles in industrialized countries is 1/1,000 to 1/500, but then you don’t seem to be big on accuracy. Not surprising since you seem to be derisive of evidence.

    Is vaccination the ONLY difference in the citizens of these countries? No. Malnutrition is usually a big variable, but it is not the only one. Infection rate is not problem the mortality rate and serious sequelae is the problem

    Are you really that delusional or just dishonest? What part of “Measles is very rare in countries and regions of the world that are able to keep vaccination coverage high.” said anything about the damage, it was clearly referring to the rate of measles infection, not fatality. The heading for that section (that you linked to) was “Measles Incidence”. Seriously, you really need to read these things for full comprehension, not just skim them for cherry-picking quotes that can be taken out of context.

    Infection rate is not problem the mortality rate and serious sequelae is the problem. These were reducing in before vaccination.

    Yeah funny how all other factors being equal, a higher infection rate means a higher rate of death and sequelae. How odd that you don’t mention that. I wonder why?

    Mortality rate is actually higher now with vaccines.

    You just can help lying can you? OK, augie where is your proof of this? We’ve been asking you for it for a few weeks now, but you still haven’t show anything credible that actually supports that position. Why not?

    They are protected after the disease.

    As I had already told you…Yes, If they survive it in the first place, you’re assuming that it won’t be a problem. Plus you’re also making the assumption that the others that they infect in the meantime won’t be harmed either. Why do you keep ignoring that?

    BTW augustine since you seem to be under the impression that getting immunity from a measles vaccine is so inferior in comparison to getting the disease I though that this might interest you [emphasis added]…

    Most children who get the vaccine develop immunity to all three diseases (over 99% for measles and 95% for mumps and rubella). Protection is believed to be life-long. Two doses of vaccine are recommended, with the first dose given at 12–15 months of age.

    Parents’ Guide to Childhood Immunization
    And gee it doesn’t involve risking killing anyone else!

    Some never get the disease.

    Your own articles show that before vaccination, about 90% would get it by age 15. You seem to be ignoring that too.

    That’s because I did calculations with the data given. You just look at the conclusions given.

    Let’s look at the numbers that you probably used. I’m sure that at this point you’ll bring up the estimated under reporting of measles cases (assuming that the estimates are accurate), but this brings up the question of if there were so many unreported cases of measles, how many cases of measles deaths went unreported/misidentified? We don’t know.

    But just to give the best (for you) scenario… Let’s go with the higher estimate of 4,000,000 cases of measles annually (most of which were unreported) assuming 500 deaths per year (and not higher, again to make it more in your favor) we still get a fatally rate of about 1/8000 (to make a simple example). Now lets compare that to the risk of serious harm from the Measles vaccine of about 1/1,000,000. Tell us augie, which is greater?

    I looked at the census and used the 1950 number of 150 million people.

    LOL! BUSTED! Caught in another deception augie. So now you’ve just admitted that you deliberately used a lower year for measles cases and then falsely implied that it was representative of the population of the whole for each year (not just 1950). While conveniently ignoring the higher years before and after 1950. How very typical of you.

    Either way you still are trying to ignore that 90% of the population having caught it by age 15. Why do you keep ignoring that augie? Oh that’s right…saying “3% per year” (while hiding that it was a low year) sounds much less risky than “90% by age 15”, even though the latter is more accurate and honest.

    Which is a 99.99+++ percentage. I like those odds

    Granted on an individual basis it does look good. But, you keep forgetting that when you are dealing with a highly contagious disease which infects 90% of the population by 15 years of age, that 0.001%-0.002% starts to add up.

    So augustine….again which is better? 99.999% with a chance of indirectly killing bystanders? Or 99.999999% with zero chance of killing bystanders? Have you decided yet augie, how many children dead of an easily preventable disease is acceptable to you yet?

    1 out of a million (BTW do you have a citation for this number. It’s actually much higher).

    Actually it was from the second article that you linked to, it’s the statistical probability of the most serious side-effect of the MMR vaccine “Encephalopathy less than 1/1,000,000 doses”. I explained that in my post at #211. The figure has been supported by every other credible medical source I’ve come across.

    It’s actually much higher

    By all means please provide a credible source for such a claim. So far nothing that you have given us supports that conclusion.

    How many people get the measles vaccine in the U.S? 100 million? So now, according to your numbers, at least 100 people have a serious reaction to measles vaccine?

    Oh brother! What is wrong with you augustine? It’s not 100 million doses per year! Since 1970 the MMR (the most common form of the vaccination) had been given in about 500 million doses in 60 countries. Seriously augie, are you even trying to think these things through honestly?

    So now you’re trying to compare the total number of doses over decades to the measles death and sequelae rate per year. Do you not see a problem with that? Lets go with the numbers though….

    How many actual deaths occured last year from measles?

    Shortly before the vaccine 450-500 per year (again from one of your own links, and other sources), it was higher earlier in the century for obvious reasons. Also 48,000 hospitalization per year before the vaccine.Parents’ Guide to Childhood Immunization

    I didn’t find a number for measles deaths in 2009, but from your second article again…”From 1980 through 1988, a median of two measles-associated deaths per year were reported”. The same was reported in 2002.

    So let’s see….
    Before vaccination…. an average 450-500 dead/48,000 hospitalized per year.

    After widespread vaccination… about 2 dead per year/and maybe 100 hospitalized over decades (using your own 100 million number).

    [sarc]
    Yeah…gee augie! I can barely tell the difference!
    [/sarc]

    That’s an honest comparison.

    As I just showed, your comparison was anything but honest.

    ————————————————————————————————————————————–
    augustine @ #222

    Did person get thrombocytopenia before making it out of their driveway?

    Thrombocytopenia? Are you really that concerned about a temporary and usually benign reduction in platelets that only happens in 1/30,000-40,000 cases of the MMR? No… you’re still trying to avoid the point of the analogy aren’t you? The point is that just because something decreases the odds of harm doesn’t necessary guaranty that you won’t be harmed.

    Is it really that hard for your dogma riddled brain to understand that if a vaccine for meningitis in the case of your article is 85% effective (as opposed to the aprox. 99% against measles for 2 doses of the MMR), that there is a 15% chance that it won’t create the required immunity? Is your understanding of probability really that poor? Has it not occurred to you that the more people that are protected by the vaccine, the less likely it is for anyone to get it.

    If more people had been vaccinated against meningitis it’s possible that she might not have caught it and would still be alive. If she wasn’t vaccinated? Oh, that’s right, she still would have caught it and died too. Funny how you left that out, but then I guess that it’s just another “minority objection”, right?

    Do you always label something irrational just because you don’t agree with it?

    Not at all. I think that it’s irrational when the evidence, the numbers (as I just showed you above), and the field experience worldwide all conclusively speak against a given position. The fact of the matter is that more people died and were hospitalized before the vaccine even in industrialized countries, than in areas that have high vaccination rates.

    Your opposing position is contradicted by all of the available evidence. That is what makes your position irrational. It is further demonstrated by that fact that you consistently have to lie about others, and misrepresent the data. Tell me augie…how rational can you position be if you must constantly lie just to defend it? The evidence shows that you want to trade lower risks for greater risks. To trade fewer deaths and sequelae for more. How is that not irrational unless you goal is to reduce the human population? Now if reducing the human population is your goal, then yes…your position would be rational, but I would find it to be a highly unethical way to go about it. **Note: I’m not actually claiming that reducing the human population is your goal augustine, merely that it’s that only position that is rationally consistent with both the facts and your position regarding the measles vaccine.**

    Zertec, you’ve committed a mind numbing number of logical fallacies while attempting to engage in rhetoric and your particular view of disease, health, and the role of prophylactic medication.

    And yet strangely (in spite of constant threats to do so) you can’t seem to accurately cite even a single one against me.

    You are constantly accusing others of making fallacies, yet nearly every time you’ve done so it’s been by deliberately misrepresenting their positions. (Such as Rouge Medic earlier, and others.) On the other hand, every fallacy I’ve pointed out that you’ve committed has been by accurately representing your consistently dishonest position. All while you are refusing to admit to one clearly documented lie after another.

    Me? I’m just a lowly virtual troll. I’m expected to make these errors because I stand for everything ignorant and irrational in the universe by the educated elite.

    On the contrary augie, I had earlier referred to you as being apparently intelligent, it’s your honesty and objectivity that I’ve called into question. You’re either a pathological liar, or you have the most severe case of Morton’s Demon that I’ve ever seen outside of a Flat Earther.

    You on the other hand are a professional scientist (or wannabe) who champions critical thinking and evidence. Remember who are are. Don’t let your emotions get the best of you.

    Good advice and thank you.

    😉

  25. #25 Todd W.
    June 7, 2010

    @Zetetic

    Great post overall, but there is one problem:

    You’re either a pathological liar, or you have the most severe case of Morton’s Demon that I’ve ever seen outside of a Flat Earther.

    False dichotomy. There are other possibilities.

    * For example, his (being uncertain as to augie’s gender, I’m going to default to the masculine) lying may not be pathological in nature. He might simply be doing it on here, but is relatively honest elsewhere in his life.
    * He may really be a troll; a well-educated troll, true, but a troll nonetheless.
    * He may simply be arguing the contrary position just for the sake of arguing.
    * He is one of the more dedicated and elaborate Poe’s seen in quite some time.

    Oh, and augie? This is an example of where Zetetic really has committed a logical fallacy, complete with an explanation of why his comment was a fallacy.

  26. #26 squirrelelite
    June 7, 2010

    @zetetic,

    I actually enjoy your little SIWOTI’s!

    Although I have trouble with the formatting changes once in a while, it usually becomes clear because your responses are clearly laid out and reasoned.

    augustine usually manages to avoid the said/said not broadsides, but comments 219 and 222 definitely remind me of Jake Crosby’s style after a few comments into the thread.

  27. #27 squirrelelite
    June 7, 2010

    Or, to borrow from Matthew chapter 7,

    “V16 By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?
    V17 Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.”

    Actually, I don’t mind reaching among the thistles to pick blackberries or raspberries. The results are worth it. But, I haven’t found any figs lurking among augustine’s thistles.

  28. #28 Zetetic
    June 7, 2010

    Thanks Todd W. and squirrelelite.
    (Yeah I hate the way the site re-formats what I type.)

    @ Todd W.:
    I’ll concede your point, apologies I’m rather sleep deprived at the moment and I made a mistake. There are indeed other possibilities, as you stated. Good catch. Apologies to augustine for leaving out the other possibilities Todd elucidated in my attempt at keeping the SIWOTI from reaching critical mass.

    ————————————————————————————————————————————–
    Speaking of corrections, I forgot to include something with vaccination statistics (sorry about that).

    “After widespread vaccination… about 2 dead per year from measles/and maybe 100 hospitalized over decades (using your own 100 million number) from vaccine reactions (although I believe the number is closer to 70 Million in the USA, IIRC) plus about 45 Measles hospitalizations per yer.Measles hospitalizations, United States, 1985-2002.

    So we have 2 deaths from measles/45 Measles hospitalization per year and our hypothetical 100 hospitalizations (over a few decades) for MMR reactions.

    Still doesn’t change much though does it?

    Oh well now to try and get some sleep for a change.
    G’night all for now!

    😉

  29. #29 MI Dawn
    June 7, 2010

    Just to pile on a little…even GETTING the disease (measles, mumps) does not guarantee immunity. I had both, and for some reason I have never developed immunity (nor did the MMR give it to me; fortunately I DID develop rubella immunity after the disease…yes, I am that old…).
    My kids have had their immunizations. I hope to goodness that I never get exposed again to measles or mumps because I don’t want to get them at my age. No one has ever figured out why I don’t develop immunity to those 2 diseases when I have developed immunity to most others I had (chicken pox, rubella). Individual quirks, but I depend on herd immunity for this.

  30. #30 T. Bruce McNeely
    June 7, 2010

    @augustine:

    What you are describing in #223 is exactly why smallpox is no longer on the routine vaccination schedule. It could happen more often if only people like you would get a clue.

    PS NICE job on #224, Zetetic!

  31. #31 DuWayne
    June 7, 2010

    I am not going to wend my way through more than two hundred comments to see if anyone else mentioned this, so I wanted to address an issue a Dan brought up towards the top. He mentioned that his problem with requiring childhood vaccines was that the federal government is in charge. That it would be fine if the laws were state laws.

    I would just like to point out, that the federal government offers an opinion, but the laws are state laws. Not all states even require a full vaccine compliment, or they just don’t require it for uninsured children of families who can’t afford the vaccines. But in any case, it is most certainly the purview of the states.

  32. #32 Composer99
    June 7, 2010

    @ 230:

    Not only that, Bruce, but even if diseases such as measles or polio were en route to eradication, it takes only a slippage of vaccination rates for them to make a comeback (especially measles).

    The most obvious example of this phenomenon is polio. If it weren’t for anti-vaccination sentiments having arose in Nigeria, polio would probably have gone the way of smallpox by now.

    It’s very ironic that anti-vaccination sentiment is prolonging the requirement to vaccinate against a number of eradicable diseases. The best way to reduce vaccinations is to eradicate such diseases as are eligible for eradication. Then we wouldn’t have to vaccinate against them at all.

  33. #33 augustine
    June 7, 2010

    “Do you assert that ALL knowledge IS science? Or that All of knowledge comes through scientific first principles?

    Zetetic: “More Straw-man arguments”

    It’s a question not a straw man argument.
    ——————————————————-

    zetetic: “Which refutes my point how exactly? Do you really think that people in general didn’t have any concern for human lives before the Nuremberg Code? That no researchers any where had any ethics?”

    Does it really matter what “people in general” think when totalitarian regimes take over?

    No reseachers anywhere? They must have fled didn’t they?

    Did the Tuskegee reseachers have concern? Did someone at the time step up and say “Hey I will not condone this”? or did the experiments continue?
    ————————————————-
    Zetetic: “how much death and suffering has been caused by religion or politics? Why is science so special to you, hmmm?”

    I posted my response at religionblogs.com and politicsblog.com
    ————————————————

    zetetic: “Because everything after that line shows that you deliberately cited, as evidence for your position, papers that contradict your position. Are you really that dishonest or just deluded?”

    I cited the papers. I did not misrepresent the papers nor their authors. Their own personal conclusions and personal opinions are unaltered. I took the data available and drew reasonable conclusions. Apparently you didn’t like that, personally.

    Zetetic: “Are you really that dishonest or just deluded? The closest you got to accurately representing the papers was when you said that the risk of death of measles was 1/1,000, but even there you still spun things a little and left out the 1-2/1,000.”

    So which is it? 1 or 2? or both?
    ———————————————————–

    zetetic: “What part of “Measles is very rare in countries and regions of the world that are able to keep vaccination coverage high.” said anything about the damage, it was clearly referring to the rate of measles infection, not fatality. The heading for that section (that you linked to) was “Measles Incidence”. Seriously, you really need to read these things for full comprehension, not just skim them for cherry-picking quotes that can be taken out of context.”

    So if there is NO permanent sequelae from measles and the incidence is high, then what is the problem? Death and permanent sequelae is the REAL issue. Otherwise long term immunity is the side effect.

    ——————————————————-

    Zetetic: “Yeah funny how all other factors being equal, a higher infection rate means a higher rate of death and sequelae. How odd that you don’t mention that. I wonder why?”

    http://ajph.aphapublications.org/cgi/reprint/52/Suppl_2/1.pdf

    scroll down. first chart. Incidence rate remains stable. Death rate goes down. Chart ends before vaccination campaign. No sir, You’re wrong.
    ————————————————————

    zetetic: “You just can help lying can you? OK, augie where is your proof of this? We’ve been asking you for it for a few weeks now, but you still haven’t show anything credible that actually supports that position. Why not?”

    You’ve figured it out yourself. Just look at the links i’ve given. 1 in 8000 (your own calculations) case fatality before vaccine 1 in 1000 after vaccine. The question is why has this happened? You’re smart. You come with your own opinion.

    Plus you’re also making the assumption that the others that they infect in the meantime won’t be harmed either. Why do you keep ignoring that?

    ———————————–

    Zertetic: “Plus you’re also making the assumption that the others that they infect in the meantime won’t be harmed either. Why do you keep ignoring that?”

    Because statistically they won’t.Why do YOU keep ignoring that?
    ————————————————–
    Zertec: “LOL! BUSTED! Caught in another deception augie. So now you’ve just admitted that you deliberately used a lower year for measles cases and then falsely implied that it was representative of the population of the whole for each year (not just 1950). While conveniently ignoring the higher years before and after 1950. How very typical of you.”

    You remind me of those 50’s movies when they say “ah Ha , you’ve been caught.”

    I chose 1950 for no other reason than to get a starting point. The population rises each year after that. Show me where I calculated that particular year’s case rate. I didn’t Mr. 1950’s detective. You kill me.

    —————————————————

    Zertetic: “Granted on an individual basis it does look good.”

    It looks good because IT IS GOOD.

    Zetetic: “Or 99.999999% with zero chance of killing bystanders?”

    Do you care to retract that before you are ripped to shreds for being ignorant of the vaccine? Your fellow science bloggers just gasped.

    ———————————————————–

    Zetetic: “Shortly before the vaccine 450-500 per year (again from one of your own links, and other sources), it was higher earlier in the century for obvious reasons.”

    No it’s apparently not obvious. Go ahead and explain these reasons and explain how these reasons ceased to be once the vaccine came into existence. As if they knew the new king was in town.

  34. #34 augustine
    June 7, 2010

    @230

    Bruce,

    I explained it that way on purpose. Do you see the logic fail? He’s arguing the individual risk vs. benefit. At some point this argument does not work in the way he has described it. At that point, is the agenda still pushed using the same logic (to the recipient) that was used to get there or do you shift the goal post to perpetuate the agenda?

  35. #35 augustine
    June 7, 2010

    Composer: “If it weren’t for anti-vaccination sentiments having arose in Nigeria, polio would probably have gone the way of smallpox by now.”

    That is speculation. That is all it is.

  36. #36 augustine
    June 7, 2010

    MI Dawn: “I had both, and for some reason I have never developed immunity (nor did the MMR give it to me; fortunately I DID develop rubella immunity after the disease…yes, I am that old…)…Individual quirks, but I depend on herd immunity for this.”

    Did you die?

  37. #37 augustine
    June 8, 2010

    Todd: “Oh, and augie? This is an example of where Zetetic really has committed a logical fallacy, complete with an explanation of why his comment was a fallacy.”

    It’s not the only one where the kid committed a fallacy.

  38. #38 Zetetic
    June 8, 2010

    augustine @ #233:

    It’s a question not a straw man argument.

    It is when you are apparently deliberately using it to imply my intent about the subject. Especially, when you are attempting to do so in order to divert attention from you own lack of an answer to my question. If that wasn’t your intent, then why did you bring it up rather than answer the question? Better yet, why even bring up “other lenses” and play down the importance of evidence in discussions about medical facts and questions of effectiveness in the first place?

    Does it really matter what “people in general” think when totalitarian regimes take over?

    Still not answering how it refutes my point. So do you think that everyone in the world was in Nazi Germany or Tuskegee? That no one ever before had any principles of ethics?

    Yes, so some scientists were in Nazi Germany and yes we know about Tuskegee, this has what to do exactly with deciding what is factually correct when talking about vaccines? Why do you seem to be confusing ethical guidelines with matters of fact and evidence?

    No, you’re just trying to make a diversion since you probably know that deep down inside you can’t win on arguments about efficacy and rates of safety.

    I posted my response at religionblogs.com and politicsblog.com

    A nice non-answer.

    ——————————————————————-

    I cited the papers. I did not misrepresent the papers nor their authors.

    You claimed that they were logic and evidence that supported your position. They didn’t. Instead you made statements of half-truth, and made claims such as “More than 97% of the population per year didn’t get measles.” that were both phrased in a way to “spin” the truth. You also deliberately cherry picked a quote that played to your spin, from a paper where the author called for the eradication of the disease, while conveniently not mentioning the author’s intent. Hardly an example of intellectual honesty.

    So which is it? 1 or 2? or both?

    Call it 1.5 if you prefer. It seems to depend on the region being studied. Again it was from your own citation, I just find it interesting that you only went with the lower estimate.

    So if there is NO permanent sequelae from measles and the incidence is high, then what is the problem? Death and permanent sequelae is the REAL issue. Otherwise long term immunity is the side effect.

    There is always a risk of death and sequelae, factors such as nutrition, education, and medical care can lower the rates but there will still always be the possibility of harm. What you are ignoring is that even if the odds are low, as the number of cases increase, so does the risk of such harm. Do you really think that all possibility of harm has just magically disappeared rather than just being reduced?

    What I find additionally amusing about your position is that you’re willing to just wave off the risk of death and sequelae from measles (as long as it’s low enough), but you apparently will not tolerate an even much lower risk of harm from the vaccinations. An interesting double standard.

    Incidence rate remains stable. Death rate goes down. Chart ends before vaccination campaign. No sir, You’re wrong.

    So what part of “all other factors being equal” was unclear to you? Funny how your evidence was a study from 1962 that compares rates from 1912 to 1962, do you think that there was no changes in the USA during that time period? Did I not already mention in my earlier post that the rate of harm in the USA was higher earlier in the last century? Funny how you always miss those details.

    You’ve figured it out yourself. Just look at the links i’ve given. 1 in 8000 (your own calculations) case fatality before vaccine 1 in 1000 after vaccine. The question is why has this happened? You’re smart. You come with your own opinion.

    Thank you, but there are several problems with your line of thought.

    Problem #1: I was deliberately making a worse case scenario from your numbers.

    Problem #2: As I earlier mentioned we don’t know how many deaths were not reported to the relevant authorities, or were miss diagnosed.

    Problem #3: The 3-4 million total cases is an estimate, but not confirmed. So we don’t really know if it’s actually valid. But for the argument I was willing to assume that it is.

    Problem #4: Even if it is true that the death rate from catching measles is higher with measles vaccination, it still doesn’t change that due to preventing the disease the total number of deaths, sequelae, and hospitalization per capita is greatly reduced with vaccination. An average of 450-500 dead per year before vaccination vs 2 dead per year with incomplete vaccination. Do you really not see a difference? For what it’s worth I’ve heard some theories that measles might be more dangerous since the people that are often getting it now are the older unvaccinated (due to not being exposed to it as early), and may be more adversely effected due to their age. While the theory is unproven, even if it’s true it still doesn’t change the total death/sequelae rates. Hint: augustine in the real world, even something that is ultimately beneficial usually has at least some drawback, the question is whether the benefits outweigh the risks. In the case of measles vaccination they still clearly do.

    Problem #5: As with smallpox, if vaccination was sufficiently complete worldwide all measles deaths and sequelae would be permanently eliminated even with no further measles vaccinations. The biggest obstacles to such a goal (in many countries) are political priorities and people such as yourself.Refusing to Vaccinate Affects Other Kids, Too

    Because statistically they won’t.Why do YOU keep ignoring that?

    Soooo….what part of “highly contagious” do you have trouble understanding? What is it about 90% having been infected by age 15 is unclear? Sorry but as I pointed out before, while the odds per individual are good (so therefore I obviously didn’t ignore it, in spite of your assertion that I had), when you start talking about large number of infected children you end up counting lots of small coffins. Funny how you seem to have trouble with basic logic and statistics when it argues against your position. What part of 500 dead and 48,000 hospitalized (before vaccination) per year are you having trouble with? Do you think that all of those dead and injured just happened through spontaneous generation of the virus?

    ——————————————————————

    You remind me of those 50’s movies when they say “ah Ha , you’ve been caught.”

    OK…I’ll admit that I was having a bit of fun with you there. I was in a silly mood at that point. I found it amusing that you just happened to conveniently chose a starting point that just happened to be bracketed by years with nearly twice the rate of infection.

    The population rises each year after that.

    And so…..the population was rising for nearly every single year before then (with the exception of WWII). OK, I’m nitpicking there again, but I find it an odd reason.

    In all seriousness though you were correct in one statement…

    It’s actually less than 3%.

    (BTW I just realized that I made a typo in my post at #219 and left out the full quote, sorry about that.) The problem that I was trying to point out (granted, I could have been more clear in retrospect) is that the “less than 3%” is for the population as a whole, it adds adults that have already survived measles with children that have just caught it (or haven’t caught it yet). That is why you can accurately claim that “less than 3%” caught measles per year (it’s actually under 1% of the whole population, adults plus kids according to CDC statistics which still doesn’t include possible under reporting) but that 90% of the population can catch it by age 15. Do you understand now though why saying something like “less than 3%”, while accurate, isn’t being fully honest? You’re attempting to portray measles as being less common among children than it was by group adults with kids (both those kids that have already survived it plus those that didn’t get it yet). Just like when you previously tried to dishonestly group possible injuries over decades, with measles deaths/sequelae per year. Funny how you like to mix such different sets of data together when you think it supports your position.

    It looks good because IT IS GOOD.

    Wait…didn’t you just say that I ignored that point, previously? Hmmmm. Funny though how you still ignore the even better odds offered by widespread vaccination.

    Do you care to retract that before you are ripped to shreds for being ignorant of the vaccine? Your fellow science bloggers just gasped.

    Really? Do you have evidence of anyone having gotten a properly manufactured modern version of the MMR that spread measles to another person? If so I’d really like to read it. Or is it like your claims about how everyone is underestimating the rate of death and serious complications from the measles vaccine that you conveniently never seem to show us?

    No it’s apparently not obvious. Go ahead and explain these reasons and explain how these reasons ceased to be once the vaccine came into existence. As if they knew the new king was in town.

    Wow…first you go off over the observation that factors such as malnutrition and improvements in medical care lower the death and sequelae risks in industrialized countries, and how you apparently think that measles is now essentially harmless just because it’s less likely to kill and injure you if you catch it in an industrialized country. Then you seem to act as though you really don’t see a connection with improvements in the USA in the earlier 1900’s in medical care, nutrition, sanitation, and education? Are you now arguing that improvements in an industrial society doesn’t improve the survival rate of measles? Hell augie, you just linked an article in your own post that showed just that! Even when in your own post at #233 you noted that the death rate went down from 1912 (were the recording starts)? What else do you think magically caused a reduction in measles fatalities before vaccination? Odd that you didn’t seem to realize that I was agreeing with you about the reduction in deaths and sequelae with improved conditions, while still failing to realize that it doesn’t really ultimately support your position.

    Interesting…that’s twice in one post that you seem to have contradicted yourself. Having trouble keeping the lies, half-truths, and rationalizations straight, augie?
    ————————————————————————————————————————————-
    augustine @ #234:

    He’s arguing the individual risk vs. benefit.

    Actually I’m arguing the risks vs. benefits both individually and for society as a whole. You are the one that seems to be fixed solely on the risk to one individual and disregards the highly contagious nature of measles, and the risks that it poses to others. Either for the individual, or society, the benefits of vaccination ultimately greatly outweigh the risks of not vaccinating. Like I said before, even with our hypothetical worse case scenario which is better… 1/8,000 odds of death or 1/1,000,000 odds of just serious injury and even lower odds of death? We’re still waiting for you to explain to us augie how a 1/1,000,000 event is more likely than a 1/8,000 event. Please tell us how?

    At some point this argument does not work in the way he has described it.

    Really? In what reality? I noticed that you still aren’t explaining it how exactly it’s wrong, yet.

    At that point, is the agenda still pushed using the same logic (to the recipient) that was used to get there or do you shift the goal post to perpetuate the agenda?

    Exactly what goalposts have been shifted by the pro-vax side? The only goalpost shifting has been by you, such as bringing up the meningitis vaccine when you were just arguing about measles, or trying to divert the conversation with arguments about “other lenses”.

    ————————————————————————————————————————————–
    augustine @ #235:

    That is speculation. That is all it is.

    Actually I have to agree with you a bit there augie (surprising, I know)….sorry Composer99. The main problem there (IIRC) is anti-west sentiment encouraged by some of the local religious leaders spreading scare stories. (Hey just like you augie!) Although people like you, augie, aren’t helping any.

    ————————————————————————————————————————————–
    augustine @ #236

    Did you die?

    Of course, augie, you’ve already made it clear to us that apparently the people who do die don’t really count unless they were vaccinated and you can spin it to blame the vaccine.

    ————————————————————————————————————————————–
    augustine @ #237:

    It’s not the only one where the kid committed a fallacy.

    Says the king/queen of lies and fallacies for the whole blog for over a week now. Still waiting for your promised “deconstruction”. For that matter we’re still waiting for you to admit to even one of your demonstrable lies in any of the threads you’ve posted in.

  39. #39 Todd W.
    June 8, 2010

    @Zetetic

    For that matter we’re still waiting for you to admit to even one of your demonstrable lies in any of the threads you’ve posted in.

    Hold on, there. Don’t set the bar too high. Let’s just start with augustine actually using a claim of logical fallacy correctly. Then, maybe he’ll provide evidence to support such a claim. If he can do that, then maybe, just maybe, we can hope that he’ll own up to some of his lies or misrepresentations that he’s been caught on.

  40. #40 Travis
    June 8, 2010

    Wow Zetetic, you have such patience and either are one very fast typer or have much more time on your hands than I do. Sadly after reading this lested post I see you still have to repeat the same things over and over and augustine still does not seem to understand.

  41. #41 augustine
    June 8, 2010

    Zetetic: “They didn’t. Instead you made statements of half-truth, and made claims such as “More than 97% of the population per year didn’t get measles.” that were both phrased in a way to “spin” the truth.”

    It’s not half-truths or spinning of truth. It is THE truth. I could say the same about your numbers. You can’t win this argument.

    What part of 1+9=10; 9+1=10 deceives?
    ———————————————————-
    Zetetic; “there is always a risk of death and sequelae, factors such as nutrition, education, and medical care can lower the rates but there will still always be the possibility of harm.”

    There is a possibility for anything isn’t there? That is not enough reason to vaccinate. Just because we don’t know and therefore we must vaccinate? What is wrong with improving the above factors. I’m fine with the very, very, very low risk that these improvements have resulted in. I’d rather put resources into these than vaccines.

    This is about an ideological agenda not what is best for everyone. If it so happens to benefit the greater good then great. If it so happens to kill a few then so be it.

    Science didn’t tell me to go hunting deer and to kill every one of them because I thought I could. Likewise science didn’t tell you nor any scientist to go microbe hunting and kill every known pathogen or certain pathogens just because someone came up with a theory that it was possible.

    It’s NOT SCIENCE! That is a strategy and the strategy is based in PHILOSOPHY! NOT SCIENCE!

    Zetetic: “but you apparently will not tolerate an even much lower risk of harm from the vaccinations. An interesting double standard.”

    You made it a double standard. Not me. Your formula for deciding medical procedures is: what is the statistical risk (supposedly known)of the homogenous population (which may or may not even represent the individual) vs. The risk of being harmed very, very seriously (again supposedly known) by the procedure.

    Your formula is moot until you answer the question “do I need the medical procedure?” Your medical opinion for me or my child is that I do.

  42. #42 augustine
    June 8, 2010

    Zetetic: “An average of 450-500 dead per year before vaccination vs 2 dead per year with incomplete vaccination. Do you really not see a difference?”

    What was mortality from 1900,1910,1920,1930,etc.? Answer: much higher and rapidly declining to 440 deaths. Vaccines had nothing to do with this decline. You cited the variable earlier. An unanswerable question is would the deaths continued to drop without vaccine? How much would it have dropped to? How much of the mortality reduction is being attributed to vaccines yet other factors are responsible for the drop?

  43. #43 MI Dawn
    June 8, 2010

    @little augie: No. I didn’t die. I have a small amount of hearing loss and caused my mother to give birth to a stillborn child who had congenital mumps (per the autopsy report). So I’m alive, my mother has had the sorrow of a stillbirth and I live with regret. I suppose that’s better than death but not important to you.

  44. #44 MI Dawn
    June 8, 2010

    Oh, and to add: my mother HAD had measles and mumps as a child, also (child of the 1940’s that she was; her entire second grade class got no grades for the fall term because of measles and mumps causing so many absenses in the class that the school district decided no child in the elementary schools – K through 6 – would get grades for that term). However, although she didn’t get a clinical case of the mumps from me, her antibody levels were obviously NOT high enough to protect the fetus.

  45. #45 augustine
    June 8, 2010

    “I have a small amount of hearing loss and CAUSED (my emphasis)my mother to give birth to a stillborn child who had congenital mumps (per the autopsy report).”

    “However, although she didn’t get a clinical case of the mumps from me, her antibody levels were obviously NOT high enough to protect the fetus.”

    HMMMMM?????

  46. #46 bobo the clown
    June 8, 2010

    i find it quite intresting that measels killed 2/3 of the population of cuba in 1529. reality trumps philosophy anyday. prove to me that small pox was elimanted by another means then vacine and i will cheerfully change my position, prove to me that measels in afficia can be elimated without vacines and i don’t need peer review papers for it i’m just and avarge person. i will see right now is a wall of text complaining about mean siency people

  47. #47 bobo the clown
    June 8, 2010

    i find it quite intresting that measels killed 2/3 of the population of cuba in 1529. reality trumps philosophy anyday. prove to me that small pox was elimanted by another means then vacine and i will cheerfully change my position, prove to me that measels in afficia can be elimated without vacines and i don’t need peer review papers for it i’m just and avarge person. i will see right now is a wall of text complaining about mean siency people

  48. #48 bobo the clown
    June 8, 2010

    i find it quite intresting that measels killed 2/3 of the population of cuba in 1529. reality trumps philosophy anyday. prove to me that small pox was elimanted by another means then vacine and i will cheerfully change my position, prove to me that measels in afficia can be elimated without vacines and i don’t need peer review papers for it i’m just and avarge person. i will see right now is a wall of text complaining about mean siency people

  49. #49 augustine
    June 8, 2010

    Bobo made a BooBoo.

    Don’t stop there. Please describe the living conditions and nutritional status in Cuba circa 1529. Please describe the living conditions and nutritional status in the third world countries. Please describe the living conditions and nutritional status of your family 2010.

  50. #50 augustine
    June 8, 2010

    Zetetic; “there is always a risk of death and sequelae, factors such as nutrition, education, and medical care can lower the rates but there will still always be the possibility of harm.”

    Zetetic,

    Do you take an antibiotic everyday? There is an african child somewhere who could succumb to a germ that you could easily kill or fight off with a broad spectrum antibiotic. That theoretical child has a 1 in 3 chance of making infected if he/she gets infect. Disease is only a plane ride away, you know?

    There is always “the POSSIBILITY of harm.” Better take the antibiotic. If that child dies the blood will be on your hands.

    Your arguments are weak. I see where you’re coming from. I just don’t agree with it. Man cannot avoid sickness and death by waging war with microbes. Man is just not that smart. I’m fine with you taking all the medicine you feel you need to take. Just don’t tell me or anyone else they need to take it because of your own fears.

  51. #51 MI Dawn
    June 8, 2010

    OK, augie. I’ll spell it out for you in simple words since my medical shorthand obviously is over your head.

    I caught the mumps at pre-school. My mother was pregnant. Her antibody level was not high enough to protect the fetus from developing congenital mumps, which caused fatal defects which killed the fetus.

    Cause: Mumps. Effect: Congenital disease which killed my mother’s third child while in the uterus.

    Simple enough and you understand now?

  52. #52 Dangerous Bacon
    June 8, 2010

    I love the frenzied graph-juggling and selective use of statistics by the antivax crowd to show that vaccine-preventable diseases would have waned on their own without immunization, and that deaths and serious injury from these diseases would have been magically eliminated by other factors.

    Wonder when they’ll start in on rabies. Used to be that no survival had ever been recorded in human rabies; in recent years a couple or so people have survived after contracting the disease (though what shape they’re in now may be another matter). Surely this means that the rabies problem has been eliminated by good hygiene or divine intervention or whatever, so we can stop mandating rabies vaccination for our susceptible pets and cease vaccine bait programs for wild animals. If more domestic animals and humans contract rabies as a result, no biggie*…they can just eat magic foods and take colloidal silver supplements, and everything will be nifty fine.

    *I’m still waiting for the first documented case of a hard-core antivaxer getting bitten by a rabid animal and subsequently declining the rabies vaccine. That would be something to see…at a distance.

  53. #53 augustine
    June 8, 2010

    A Case but not A clinical case. Got it.

    I read it as you saying she didn’t get the mumps from you.

  54. #54 augustine
    June 8, 2010

    bacon: “I love the frenzied graph-juggling and selective use of statistics by the antivax crowd to show that vaccine-preventable diseases would have waned on their own without immunization,”

    The data doesn’t show that it WOULD have waned, it shows that it DID wane.

  55. #55 Gray Falcon
    June 8, 2010

    Augustine, if you bothered to carefully examine the graphs, you’d realize that the values were, in fact, varying, and only appear to be dropping if you selected the proper years. Also, there is a VERY rapid drop after the vaccine is introduced.

    Please stop trying to deny the effectiveness of vaccination. It’s a bit like trying to disprove the possibility of heavier than air flight while riding on a 747.

  56. #56 Composer99
    June 8, 2010

    @ 254:

    Oh, look, another deliberate misrepresentation.

    Good job, troll.

  57. #57 augustine
    June 8, 2010

    Gary Falcon: “Augustine, if you bothered to carefully examine the graphs, you’d realize that the values were, in fact, varying, and only appear to be dropping if you selected the proper years”

    Oh, I see. It only “appears to be dropping”. It’s not really going down on the Y axis it only “appears” to be. Silly me.

    Oh wait, I had my computer screen upside down. Maybe that’s why I couldn’t see it right. There all fixed.

    http://ajph.aphapublications.org/cgi/reprint/52/Suppl_2/1.pdf

    Nope deaths are still decreasing before vaccine ever implemented. I can’t believe my own eyes.

    Falcon, seriously c’mon.

  58. #58 Zetetic
    June 9, 2010

    augustine @ #241:

    It’s not half-truths or spinning of truth. It is THE truth. I could say the same about your numbers. You can’t win this argument.

    Can’t win it? Wrong, I already did. That your refuse to acknowledge it is simply a symptom of your own dogmatically clinging to a position. It doesn’t matter how much you continue to lie in order to evade the point that you are deliberately grouping adult and child survivors of measles in with the uninfected, the fact of the matter if that you are deliberately trying to spin the stats so that they look more favorable to your position. As an example (and without trying to derail the thread), it’s like when Global Warming Deniers repeat the old line of there being “No statistically significant warming since 1995” technically it’s a true statement but what they don’t tell you is that from 1994 (just one year longer) there is a measurable statistically significant global warming. Just as you neglect to mention that 90% of the population had been infected before age 15. It’s the proverbial “sin of omission”.

    Want to say the same about my numbers? Go right ahead…we’ve been trying to get you to provide evidence that actually supports the idea that vaccination is more harmful than not vaccinating for weeks.

    Like I told you before, augie, that is the difference between us and you. All you have to do to change my position is provide credible evidence that the measles vaccine is ultimately more harmful than not vaccinating. Instead all you do is argue that a 1/8,000 risk of death is better than a 1/1,000,000 of encephalopathy (the most dangerous side-effect) of MMR. You keep asserting that vaccines are more dangerous than not vaccinating, but nothing you’ve offered has supported it.

    Tell us augie, honestly, what would it take to convince you that vaccines are safer than not vaccinating? The statistics all ready support that conclusion, so obviously that isn’t sufficient to you.

    There is a possibility for anything isn’t there? That is not enough reason to vaccinate.

    It is when the odds of death and sequelae from measles without vaccinating is greater than the odds of harm with vaccination. Shortly before the vaccine the decline in death rates was leveling off, it then plummeted shortly after the vaccine started being used.

    What part of 450-500 deaths/48,000 hospitalized annually (just before the vaccine) vs 2 deaths/45 hospitalized annually with vaccination makes it seem like vaccination is more dangerous? Really I’d like to know.

    I’d rather put resources into these than vaccines.

    A baseless assumption. Why make the assumption that you can make significantly greater improvements in fatality without the vaccine just because it happened early in the first half of the 20th century? For that matter, why are you making the additionally baseless assumption that they are mutually exclusive? Funny how you have no trouble criticizing others as making assumptions even when they are reasonably backed by evidence, but you have no trouble with risking the lives of children over your own far more baseless assumptions.

    This is about an ideological agenda not what is best for everyone.

    More projection from augustine. Yes, augie you’ve made it abundantly clear that you are arguing exclusively from a position driven by ideology (as far as measles goes) and that you have shown no concern at all for what is best for everyone as a whole. You consistently side with greater risks of harm for both the individual and for the population as a whole, justifying it with one baseless assertion after another, all in pursuit of your ideological position.

    We on the other hand, have been arguing exclusively for what is best for both the individual and the population as a whole. Please by all means show evidence otherwise.

    If it so happens to kill a few then so be it.

    This coming from the person that thinks that 450-500 deaths per year is preferable to 2 deaths per year.

    It’s NOT SCIENCE! That is a strategy and the strategy is based in PHILOSOPHY! NOT SCIENCE!

    So now you’re arguing against the ethics of trying to protect human lives through medicine? If it’s really about ethics then why are you lying about the science in the first place? Oh that’s right, if you admit that vaccines ultimately save more lives than they take, it makes it much harder for you to make your case. No wonder why you have to lie and spin.

    You made it a double standard. Not me. Your formula for deciding medical procedures is: what is the statistical risk (supposedly known)of the homogenous population (which may or may not even represent the individual) vs. The risk of being harmed very, very seriously (again supposedly known) by the procedure.

    You’re projecting again augie… a double standard is saying that 2 deaths per year with vaccination is intolerable, but 450-500 deaths per year from an easily preventable disease is just fine. A double standard is saying that a 1/1,000 risk (from your own statements expressing your willingness to take the 1/1,00 risk) of death is fine, but that a less than 1/1,000,000 risk of death is too great.

    My position is that even with assuming a worse case scenario (as much in your favor as possible with the numbers) the risk of not vaccinating the population as a whole is worse than the odds of harm from vaccinating the population. The numbers that you augie want to use still support that position and you have failed to make an argument to the contrary.

    Your double standard is clear for all to see augie, how exactly is my siding with what is safest not just for the population as a whole, but also individually (even when assuming your worst case scenario) a double standard? Please explain, I’m sure that it’ll be hilarious.

    Your formula is moot until you answer the question “do I need the medical procedure?” Your medical opinion for me or my child is that I do.

    So augie, your position is that we should never use any medical procure no matter how low the risk of harm, until after someone is already sick or dying, even if it means preventing far greater levels of death? How is that rational? The answer is obvious if you’d set aside the dogma for a moment. If there are still people dying from an easily preventable disease and it’s safer for them to be protected (than to not be protected), then yes it makes sense to use the vaccine. Especially when it can potentially be eradicated and thereby eliminate the risk from it entirely forever.

    ————————————————————————————————————————————–
    augustine @ #242:

    What was mortality from 1900,1910,1920,1930,etc.? Answer: much higher and rapidly declining to 440 deaths.

    Yes…due to improvements in living conditions, nutrition, and medical care. So why were you just arguing against that in your post @ #233? Are you brain damaged? Or too blinded by dogma to realize that I was agreeing with you on that point. Even after I explained to you at least twice that I was agreeing with you about that? Or are you just being a lying troll?

    An unanswerable question is would the deaths continued to drop without vaccine? How much would it have dropped to? How much of the mortality reduction is being attributed to vaccines yet other factors are responsible for the drop?

    True, it can’t be answered. But that doesn’t justify making an unwarranted assumption that they would have continued to do so (as you are doing augie), especially since the fatality rates were starting to level off before the measles vaccine was introduced. Check out your own link at page 3, figure 3. http://ajph.aphapublications.org/cgi/reprint/52/Suppl_2/1.pdf

    Plus the fact that measles does still kill even in modern societies today, and therefore obviously there would still be some measles caused deaths. The difference, that you consistently try to ignore, is that without vaccination the death rate would be higher than it is today. Granted it MIGHT be lower than before vaccination was started (although how much lower is arguable), but it would still be higher than with widespread vaccination.

    A better question is how many deaths would there be if measles vaccination was sufficiently widespread enough to eradicate measles altogether, just like with smallpox? (No, I haven’t forgotten that you keep dodging that little detail.)

    Answer: None.

    ————————————————————————————————————————————–
    augustine @ #249:

    Don’t stop there. Please describe the living conditions and nutritional status in Cuba circa 1529. Please describe the living conditions and nutritional status in the third world countries. Please describe the living conditions and nutritional status of your family 2010.

    I’m sorry… but weren’t you earlier arguing against my saying the same thing about improvement in the USA back at your post at #233? Are you now going to admit that you were wrong earlier?

    ————————————————————————————————————————————–
    augustine @ #250

    Do you take an antibiotic everyday?

    Why would I take an antibiotic against a virus?

    I know…I know…you’re just making a monumentally stupid analogy. You do realize, don’t you, that with antibiotics that overuse also poses risks? When the risks of overuse outweigh the benefits you should stop, that is the standard medical position. The difference is that the risks of using the MMR vaccine is still outweighed by just a little over 2 orders of magnitude by the risks of not using it. All you have to do to make a case otherwise is to finally show evidence that the risks of using vaccines is outweighed by the risk of not using them. Something that you have consistently failed to show after weeks.

    There is always “the POSSIBILITY of harm.” Better take the antibiotic. If that child dies the blood will be on your hands.

    If I get sick with something bacterial I generally try to avoid exposing others until any antibiotics I take have had time to make sure that I’m no longer contagious. Maybe you think that it’s OK if you don’t, since you seem to think that other people catching your infections is just another “minority objection”. Personally I prefer to not be such a self-absorbed SOB, and try to show some consideration for others. Again it’s still about those relative risks that you just can’t seem to backup.

    Man cannot avoid sickness and death by waging war with microbes. Man is just not that smart.

    Against all diseases? Of course not, at least not any time in the near future. But then no one here is claiming that such a thing is possible at this time, you seem to be making another Straw-man there augie. But right now it is possible to win battles again some forms of disease. Or do you think the all of the smallpox viruses worldwide committed mass suicide since us humans are just so dumb?

    Just don’t tell me or anyone else they need to take it because of your own fears.

    It’s not about my fears, augie, it’s about the rate of death and sequelae and having some compassion about others to rationally decide what’s best for everyone on the whole and individually. If there was a way to insure that in the process that you didn’t harm others by not vaccinating then I’d be fine with that, even though even your own worse case numbers show that you’d be a fool for accepting a higher risk over a lower one.

    ————————————————————————————————————————————–
    augustine @ #254

    The data doesn’t show that it WOULD have waned, it shows that it DID wane.

    True, but if you REALLY looked at it (and removed your dogma goggles for a minute) you would have realized that the rate of decrease was leveling off (see above).

    ————————————————————————————————————————————–

    Nope deaths are still decreasing before vaccine ever implemented. I can’t believe my own eyes.

    Falcon, seriously c’mon.

    Funny how your eyes noticed the decline but also missed the leveling off (see above, again).

    ————————————————————————————————————————————–
    BTW augie have you found any cases yet were someone getting a properly manufactured MMR vaccine spread measles to someone else? I’m still waiting for that, after all you were so sure that the other blogers here would take me to task for it. Surely if they didn’t take me to task you wouldn’t let it slide if it was true would you? Or were you just making another childish bluff, thinking that some how I’d shy off? News flash, augie, you’re the one that so far won’t admit a mistake (or apologize for a lie), not I.

    I’m also still waiting on your evidence that the MMR is less safe than the disease….and no just making more baseless assertions about how dangerous the MMR is doesn’t count.

    😉

  59. #59 augustine
    June 9, 2010

    Zetetic: “All you have to do to change my position is provide credible evidence that the measles vaccine is ultimately more harmful than not vaccinating. Instead all you do is argue that a 1/8,000 risk of death is better than a 1/1,000,000 of encephalopathy (the most dangerous side-effect) of MMR. You keep asserting that vaccines are more dangerous than not vaccinating, but nothing you’ve offered has supported it.”

    You’ve created a massive straw man argument.You’re supposed to be a champion of critical thinking but your philosophical beliefs have blinded you from seeing this as a straw man tactic.

    Like I said earlier I like my chances of 99.999+% of not becoming permanently injured by measles virus. Actually those odds are assuming a homogenous population. But it’s not a homogenous population. Healthy people have much better odds than those.

    You only have one logical argument remaining for me and that option presents ethical challenges which are outside the scope of science. You have no more arguments from a scientific standpoint only a philosophical standpoint. And I don’t agree with your philosophy or your vehicle (microbe eradication) to express that philosophy.

  60. #60 madder
    June 9, 2010

    @Augustine 257:

    Yet another deliberate misrepresentation. Perhaps your quote-mining would be more successful if the original text weren’t right there above yours. Note the part that you left out (I put it in bold so you wouldn’t miss it this time): “only appear to be dropping if you selected the proper years.” If you were anyone else, I’d be moderately surprised that the full quote contradicted your representation of it. But I’ve read your comments, and no level of mendacity from you can surprise me any more.

    Also notice that cases remained steady in that graph you directed us to. You’re as dense as bensmyson if you think that one supports your case. Or perhaps you’re just lying again.

    Your lies are getting weaker with time. I’m leaning toward the hypothesis that you’re a Poe.

  61. #61 madder
    June 9, 2010

    @augie #259:

    Like I said earlier I like my chances of 99.999+% of not becoming permanently injured by measles virus.

    What will happen to your chances if people stop vaccinating?

  62. #62 Dedj
    June 9, 2010

    Hmm, the graph shows a steady trend in cases, and a downwards trend in deaths ending in a relatively steady rate, and the text states that this downwards trend may have ceased and levelled off over the last few years.

    Somehow, this is being used as direct evidence that the downwards trend would have continued.

    Sarcasm is no defence against failing to understand a graph and plainly stated text.

    Augie is done here. All that’s left is to determine how much of an arse they have made out of themselves.

  63. #63 Composer99
    June 9, 2010

    Dedj @ 262:

    A mighty big one, emitting some foul stuff indeed.

  64. #64 augustine
    June 9, 2010

    madder:”What will happen to your chances if people stop vaccinating?”

    My chances? Nothing. I still like my chances circa 1967. Pre-vaccine era.

    “This self-limiting infection of
    short duration, moderate severity, and
    low fatality has maintained a remarkably
    stable biological balance over the
    centuries.”

  65. #65 augustine
    June 9, 2010

    “and the text states that this downwards trend may have ceased and levelled off over the last few years.”

    But we would need 5,10,20 more years to see if it would.

    “Also notice that cases remained steady in that graph you directed us to. You’re as dense as bensmyson if you think that one supports your case.”

    No need for name calling. Also, just about every infectious disease follows the same pattern BEFORE vaccines. I’m not saying that vaccines don’t affect immunity but they seem to get the lion’s share of credit for the numbers we see today.

    http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/55441/1/Aiello%20A,%20What%20is%20the%20evidence%20for%20a%20causal%20link%20between%20hygien%20and%20infections,%202002.pdf

  66. #66 augustine
    June 9, 2010

    Zertec: “Then, just as I asked you before, instead of just making “woo-prattle” give us an example of any advancement in human knowledge that was produced by unscientific thinking and explain how we know that it’s correct. Surely it can’t be that hard can it?”

    Answer: Penicillin. Name the scientific first principle that was the foundation for the discovery of antibiotics. There wasn’t one at the time. It was luck and “fortuitous” events combined with observation that led to it’s discovery. There was no skeptic brand of science involved.

  67. #67 madder
    June 9, 2010

    After promising myself that I wouldn’t feed the troll, look what I went and did. Now I have to get a shovel and clean up after it.

    I notice that you don’t address the quotemining I referenced above.

    You say that you “like your chances” with respect to measles given 1967 numbers. That’s nice. Foolish, but whatever. My point addressed your “99.999+%” chances of not being seriously harmed by measles. This would go down if fewer people vaccinated. But you know that, so I’m just keeping score for the spectators.

    Of course the downward trend would have ceased and leveled off. We see it in the graph that you linked to, and don’t need “5,10,20” more years to see it. Do you expect that perhaps it would continue its linear decrease past zero? That people would spontaneously come back to life because of measles? I hope I never meet a measles-zombie. Or perhaps it would rise again- we’d forget a century’s worth of medical advances?

    You say that vaccines unfairly get the lion’s share of credit for saving lives. We rightly credit vaccination with reducing the incidence of certain diseases, and therefore the attendant complications, whatever they may be. Perhaps you’d like to go back to the days of polio wards, and hospitals full of kids with preventable diseases, since it’s likely that fewer of those people would die given our advances in hospital care. I’d rather avoid that altogether.

    I’m done with you. I am convinced that you’re a troll, or a Poe, or playing some other silly game. Have fun with yourself.

  68. #68 augustine
    June 10, 2010

    Mad hatter: “My point addressed your “99.999+%” chances of not seriously harmed by measles. This would go down if fewer people vaccinated. But you know that, so I’m just keeping score for the spectators.”

    I certainly hope you’re not a doctor. Silly you, those ARE the 1967 statistics, pre-vaccine era. Mad hatter would be a better name for you. Maybe you have thimeresol poisoning. Maybe you’re a wannabe doctor.

    Mad person: “Do you expect that perhaps it would continue its linear decrease past zero? That people would spontaneously come back to life because of measles?”

    No. but coming from this statement I do expect more logical fallacy errors coming from you.

    madder by now: “Perhaps you’d like to go back to the days of polio wards, and hospitals full of kids with preventable diseases, since it’s likely that fewer of those people would die given our advances in hospital care.”

    A common fallacious use of logic particularly by the bottom dwellers on this site. Since someone questions the use of mass vaccination then they must be for death. Logic fail.

    I’m really really mad now: “Now I have to get a shovel and clean up after it.”

    Like you did anything. At least some of the other posters are more passionate. You’re just stupid.

  69. #69 Zetetic
    June 10, 2010

    augustine still lying at @ @259:

    You’ve created a massive straw man argument.You’re supposed to be a champion of critical thinking but your philosophical beliefs have blinded you from seeing this as a straw man tactic.

    Thank you for saying what I knew you would say, oh predictable one. As usual you haven’t admitted to any of any of the rather obvious error and deceptions of yours that I pointed out in your last post.

    So, how have I committed a Straw-Man when you’ve repeatedly stated that vaccines are more harmful than indicated, and that you’d rather take the odds of disease in an unvaccinated society, rather than get 2 little shots even though it ultimately confers greater safety? How is representing your own positions a “straw man”? Was it not you that claimed earlier “Mortality rate is actually higher now with vaccines.”?

    Like I said earlier I like my chances of 99.999+% of not becoming permanently injured by measles virus.

    And here is exactly were the irrationality of your position is revealed.

    You are still dismissing away the fact that the odds of harm per individual is greater without widespread vaccination that with it. Just as you have also continued to ignore that the odds of harm of vaccination can also be eliminated to zero once a disease has been eradicated. It’s a win-win, no more deaths/sequelae from the disease in question, and no risk of harm from that particular vaccine either, as negligible as it may be. You own words indicate that you know this, but that you still ignore it. Tell us augie, what is the logic of taking a greater risk instead of a lesser risk? I asked you this a while ago but you never answered. If your position is based solely on emotion, then you position is in fact irrational, something you attacked me about earlier for pointing out.

    Like I said earlier I like my chances of 99.999+% of not becoming permanently injured by measles virus.

    Yet strangely you seem to consider that 99.99999% to be a intolerably great risk. Hence the your double standard that I mentioned earlier. They should just LOVE you in Vegas.

    Actually those odds are assuming a homogenous [sic] population. But it’s not a homogenous [sic] population.

    Of course it’s not. Your claiming that we are assuming it is homogeneous another Straw-man. Some people are hyper-sensitive to the vaccine, that is why there are the occasional cases of severe reaction, but fortunately such conditions are rare. Others are allergic, but as I’ve show earlier, anaphylactic cases are rare too. Why do you think that there are statistics of the rate of possible harm in the first place? I find it amusing that you seem to think that the science assumes a homogeneous population, when in fact the statistics are derived from, a non-homogeneous population. That populations can change over time is one of the reasons why the statistics are constantly being re-evaluated, and why they can vary from location to location.

    That some people are different is precisely why there are different vaccine formulations, medical exemptions, and why herd immunity is important. All factors that you have taken great pains to avoid recognizing or just brushed off as “minority objections”, while accusing us of assuming a homogeneous population.

    Healthy people have much better odds than those.

    Which is precisely why for the sake of argument I was willing to assume a worse case scenario in your favor, but again your position still failed to hold up. Again you are still just making yet another baseless assumption to prop up your facade of a position.

    Tell us augie…Exactly how much better are those odds? What evidence do you have to support the assertion when 90% of the population used to get it by age 15? That was the basis of the worst case scenario, putting things as much in your favor as we could. Are you saying that we’re not supposed to care about the 450-500 dead and 48,000 hospitalized per year? After all they weren’t “healthy”, right augie? Do you think that they were weak and therefore deserved (in some sense) to get what they got? Just as long as you don’t have to get a couple of small shots all of the death and suffering is all worth it, right?

    You only have one logical argument remaining for me and that option presents ethical challenges which are outside the scope of science. You have no more arguments from a scientific standpoint only a philosophical standpoint. And I don’t agree with your philosophy or your vehicle (microbe eradication) to express that philosophy.

    Interesting. You still haven’t answered why if your objection is one of philosophy (apparently a very sloppy and irrational philosophy), then why are you lying about others and arguing about the science? Oh that’s right, I guess that I already answered that one for your earlier on my last post.

    Since you have neither a scientific argument nor a coherent ethical argument against using vaccines I don’t really care about what you think regarding my position. That you seem to think that I’ve been trying to convince you of anything is a mistake on your part. You’ve long since revealed you self to either be an inveterate liar, a troll, or so blinded by irrational dogma that attempting to reason with you is a futile endeavor. You have revealed that you have neither logic nor evidence to your position. Plus you lack even the most basic vestiges of intellectual honesty, failing to apologize even when publicly revealed to have committed lies about others, nor admitting to even the most basic of errors.

    No augie, this isn’t about you. It never was. It’s about anyone else that might be reading this, and my own amusement at your apparent smug self-righteous arrogance. Anyone reading this will clearly see that you have failed to support your position and that you show a lack of empathy towards your fellow humans that (if it’s not just a troll act) borders on the nearly sociopathic. I’d like to thank you for making the true colors of the anti-vax movement (assuming that it’s not an act) abundantly clear for all to see.

    Remember your quote here from your post at #250?

    Man cannot avoid sickness and death by waging war with microbes. Man is just not that smart.

    Your position reminds me of the advise some people give to women in the case of sexual assault…. the old “Just relax and try to enjoy it” position that shows an utter lack of even basic compassion or understanding. Disgusting.

    You even know that modern medicine can get rid of death from some diseases, but you just want to lay back and let people die, since you can’t be bothered to get 2 small shots (assuming no valid medical contraindications). This seems to be a common pattern among many deniers. Deny the problem, deny the solution, and when you can’t do that any more deny that anyone should do anything about the problem in the first place.
    ======================================================================================================================================
    madder @ #261:

    What will happen to your chances if people stop vaccinating?

    Actually, augie and I are arguing from a position of assuming no measles vaccination (as in pre-1963). What augie is failing to acknowledge is that it’s irrational to accept the risk of death per individual from measles while opposing a risk of harm from the vaccine is about 125 times less than from the disease. He/She has also indicated that those that do die when considering the large numbers of infected, don’t matter since apparently they aren’t “healthy” enough. Augie seems to arguing from an extremely simplistic and short-sighted form of Social-Darwinism.
    ======================================================================================================================================
    Dedj @ #

    Somehow, this is being used as direct evidence that the downwards trend would have continued.

    Yes, as I pointed out earlier augie seems to be very intolerant of others making any assumptions, even when it’s logical and supported by credible evidence. It’s simply another of augie’s double standards that it’s OK for him/her to make utterly baseless assertions, even when his/her own evidence contradicts it.

    Augie is done here.

    Oh I’m fairly sure that augie will keep popping up around the blog to say something else pretentiousness and inane. But augustine has revealed himself/herself to be just another denialist, with nothing for ammunition but more of the usual sophistry.
    ======================================================================================================================================
    augustine @ #264:

    My chances? Nothing. I still like my chances circa 1967. Pre-vaccine era.

    Yeah funny how I had already proven that your “Nothing” is still just over 2 orders of magnitude a greater risk than getting the MMR vaccination. I guess that means that you’re admitting that the risks of getting the MMR are less than nothing? If not please provide evidence that actually supports your position for a change.

    “This self-limiting infection of short duration, moderate severity, and low fatality has maintained a remarkably stable biological balance over the centuries.”

    Poor augustine is still quote mining from a paper advocating the elimination of measles. Translation of augie: Who cares if 450-500 die and 48,000 are hospitalized from measles a year? I just don’t want to get 2 little shots no matter how reasonably safe it may be.

    What’s the matter augie, did your mommy not give you any lollipops when you got a shot?

    ======================================================================================================================================
    augustine @ #265:

    But we would need 5,10,20 more years to see if it would.

    Only to see exactly were it leveled off at. That it was leveling off is clear from the data. As I already mentioned though, we do in fact know that there would still be measles deaths today, since in fact there are still measles deaths today, thanks in part to people like you.

    No need for name calling.

    There was even less reason for you to lie about others (such as Brian Deer) but that sure didn’t stop you.

    I’m not saying that vaccines don’t affect immunity but they seem to get the lion’s share of credit for the numbers we see today.

    Yeah funny how a disease’s death rate levels off, and then shortly after the widespread vaccination is started, the death rate drastically plummets due to much fewer people being infected. It’s also funny how the same pattern repeats in country after country.

    BTW augie…where did any of the pro-vax side say that hygiene doesn’t matter? Your link only says that hygiene plays an important role, that’s kind of a “no duh!” statement. It doesn’t nothing to undermine the role of vaccines, as was already noted above. Are you still trying to resurrect that Straw-Man again, I already called you on it before remember?
    ======================================================================================================================================
    madder @ #266:

    After promising myself that I wouldn’t feed the troll, look what I went and did. Now I have to get a shovel and clean up after it.

    Don’t feel too bad about it. People like augie tend to reduce themselves in significance the more they talk. Why do you think I’ve been spending all this time at it?

    I notice that you don’t address the quotemining I referenced above.

    Nor will augie ever admit to any other error or lie. All the more reason to keep bringing it up whenever augie rears it’s dishonest little head.
    =====================================================================================================================================
    Come on augie… We’re still waiting for you to provide any logical basis for your position. It can’t be that hard can it, or is it that you’re just phobic of shots/scientific medicine and feel some weird need to rationalize it?

    😉

  70. #70 Todd W.
    June 10, 2010

    @Zetetic

    Are you saying that we’re not supposed to care about the 450-500 dead and 48,000 hospitalized per year? After all they weren’t “healthy”, right augie?

    I half expect augustine to reply, “Well, of course they weren’t healthy! They got sick!”

    That draws very near to Th1Th2’s attitude over at SBM.

  71. #71 augustine
    June 10, 2010

    99.999++% odds that measles will not have permanent or residual problems.

    Rational to not take vaccine? yes.

    Reasonable? yes.

    Based on science? yes.

    Aware that some people are shaking in their boots about a <0.00001 of their child getting measles and dying? check.

    Realize that there is a microbe eradication ideological agenda going on in the background of this debate? YEP.

  72. #72 augustine
    June 10, 2010

    “Are you saying that we’re not supposed to care about the 450-500 dead and 48,000 hospitalized per year? After all they weren’t “healthy”, right augie?”

    They can get vaccinated if they believe it will save them. The vaccine works right?

  73. #73 augustine
    June 10, 2010

    “Are you saying that we’re not supposed to care about the 450-500 dead and 48,000 hospitalized per year? After all they weren’t “healthy”, right augie?”

    In general, what type of person gets measles gets sick and then dies? Then you have to ask yourself Am I that type of person? The answer for me is NO!

  74. #74 Zetetic
    June 11, 2010

    augsustine @ #271:

    Rational to not take vaccine? yes.

    Nope. Not when the odds are even better when taking the vaccine.

    Reasonable? yes.

    Still nope. See Above.

    Based on science? yes

    You mean based on the same science that you earlier seemed to indicated that didn’t matter, and that shows that the odds are better with the vaccine than without?

    Realize that there is a microbe eradication ideological agenda going on in the background of this debate? YEP.

    Yeah because wanting to minimize human death and suffering is an “ideological agenda”. You seem to have a rather lose definition of an ideology there augie.

    The funny thing is augie, you could be completely and perfectly safe from measles without getting a shot yourself if enough other people got the MMR instead. Not every one even needs to get the shot to eliminate measles, just enough of the population to make the herd immunity, that you are so dismissive of, strong enough for long enough for the measles to die off. Not everyone had to get the smallpox vaccine to eradicate it either, all it took was enough people to get it. Remember your paper advocating the elimination of measles from the 60’s, if more people had been vaccinated before we wouldn’t even be arguing about measles today, it would be dead, gone, and largely forgotten. I find it amusing that you talk as though you want a world without having to get the measles vaccination, when the biggest obstacle to eliminating measles is people like yourself, even if it’s all possibly been an act.

    =============================================================================================================================
    augustine @ #272:

    They can get vaccinated if they believe it will save them. The vaccine works right?

    Sure, but when people like you are deliberately going around telling lies and fear-mongering over assertions of harm from the vaccine the number of people that don’t get vaccinated goes down. When enough people don’t vaccinate the disease comes back and starts doing damage, starting with the unvaccinated that were either dumb enough to believe people like you, or those that can’t for various reasons. But of course you’ve already established that you apparently don’t care about them, right augie?
    ===========================================================================================================================
    augustine @ #273:

    In general, what type of person gets measles gets sick and then dies? Then you have to ask yourself Am I that type of person? The answer for me is NO!

    [sarc]Yes, aguie because denying that something is true will keep it from being true.[/sarc]

    The type of people that tend to get infected are those that haven’t been protected by either the infection or the disease. Your own scenario (remember 1/8000 vs 1/1000) seems to point to an increasing risk as you get older. Have you been either vaccinated or infected yet? Also, as I’ve also pointed out earlier there is those that you infect, if you catch the disease. Even if it doesn’t kill you, it may kill them. Oh but that’s right, you don’t care about anybody else, right augie?

    But there is more to consider that you seem to be overlooking in your overly simplistic worldview there augie. Tell us augie are you immortal? Do you think that you’ll never get older, or sick?

    [sarc]
    Look! Up there in the sky! Is it a bird? Is it a plane?
    No ! It’s Super-Augie!

    Yes, Super-Augie, strange visitor from a distorted view of reality…who came to Earth with powers and reasoning abilities far below those of mortal men.

    Super-Augie, who can derail thread discussions by trolling.
    Tell big lies in a single sentence, can evade taking responsibility for any lie or error on his part, and who, disguised as augustine, a mildly bothersome troll in the threads of a great metropolitan science blog, fights a never ending battle for lies, harm to others, and the contagious way!
    [/sarc]

    Like I said before augie (assuming that the arrogance is not all just an act), I bet that they’d just LOVE you in Vegas!

    😉
    =================================================================================================================
    @ Todd W.
    Yeah I figured that to…and yeah I caught T1T2’s routine over there as well. There’s only so much time in the day though, and T1T2’s routine is just a one-trick pony. At least our augie here can do a little song-and-dance.

  75. #75 augustine
    June 11, 2010

    “At least our augie here can do a little song-and-dance.”

    And you or anyone else for that matter who decides to engage will do the little song and dance with me.

    As long as the solutions involve the application of ethics, morals, and values we’ll keep singing and dancing. You’ll keep talking about disease and fear and I’ll keep talking talking about ethical informed consent.

  76. #76 augustine
    June 11, 2010

    Look! Up there in the sky! Is it a bird? Is it a plane?
    No ! It’s Super-Augie!

    And you too can become like Super-Augie with an immune system that can handle the measles virus without vaccination. Be able to fend off the mind control that tells you your immune system is too weak to fight a measles microbe without the help of vaccines. In spite of the scientific fact that 99.999+++% of the population didn’t need a vaccine to begin with. Once you become a Super Augie you’ll be able to use you your x-ray vision to filter out the enormous kryptonite type amount of propaganda that is laid over a foundation of data disguised as scientific fact.

  77. #77 augustilne
    June 11, 2010

    Zertec: “Yeah because wanting to minimize human death and suffering is an “ideological agenda”. You seem to have a rather lose definition of an ideology there augie.”

    The road to hell is paved with good intentions. But if you’re an atheist then it’s justified.

  78. #78 Zetetic
    June 12, 2010

    aughustine @ #275:

    You’ll keep talking about disease and fear and I’ll keep talking talking about ethical informed consent.

    Yet another Straw-Man from augie! Tell us aguie, where exactly here did anyone on the pro-vax/pro-science side argue against informed consent? You talk about how you’ll keep arguing for informed consent, but nowhere so far have you actually done that. Note: informed consent doesn’t mean that those opposed to the procedure get to just make up lies and claim it as fact without credible evidence.

    As for fear, what exactly is it that makes you so fearful of a couple of little bitty shots? Or makes you so afraid of eradicating a disease that kills people? Hell augie, you’re apparently so afraid of a couple little shots that even children dying is of no concern to you, as long as it doesn’t effect you personally.

    If from the start you had just claimed that you don’t want to get a couple of little shots, and that you’re willing to take the risks even though the risks are higher than with the shot, then there would have been little to argue about. But (assuming that it’s not all just an act for you) you seem to be compelled to rationalize your position even though your own numbers don’t support your conclusion. Instead you’ve wasted lots of time arguing about the merits of vaccination and lying about others rather than just admitting that the shot is safer, but that you still refuse to take it. I find your attempts at rationalization rather interesting, and rather amusing.
    =====================================================================================================================
    augustine @ #276:

    Once you become a Super Augie you’ll be able to use you your x-ray vision to filter out the enormous kryptonite type amount of propaganda that is laid over a foundation of data disguised as scientific fact.

    And ignore the inevitable piles of dead and injured children, and the potential risks to your own health (sooner or later). Tell us augie, since you didn’t answer earlier, do you really think that you’ll stay “healthy” forever?

    “Denial, it ain’t just a river in Egypt.”
    ====================================================================================================================
    augustine @ #277:

    The road to hell is paved with good intentions.

    True, but picking the road with the lower body count usually works pretty well to avoid picking the wrong road. The road to hell is also paved in ignorance, self-absorption, and shortsightedness. You know, your camp augie. Looks like your still projecting augie, it’s your side that increase death and suffering, remember? Also, you still haven’t shown (after weeks) that vaccination is more harmful than not vaccinating. Why haven’t you been able to locate that evidence yet?

    But if you’re an atheist then it’s justified.

    So you’re saying that only atheists can have compassion for their fellow humans and want to reduce humans suffering? It’s interesting that you have such a low opinion of the religious, even though it’s a rather nice thing for you to say about atheists.

  79. #79 David N. Brown
    June 12, 2010

    @269:
    “Deny the problem, deny the solution, and when you can’t do that any more deny that anyone should do anything about the problem in the first place.”
    I do believe I’m going to steal this one.
    Also, an irony: In the 1800s, when genuine problems with vaccines were far more common, clergymen were lining up to support vaccination. Hence, making an issue out of some “pro-vaxxers” being atheist makes one look rather stupid(er).

  80. #80 augustine
    June 12, 2010

    David Brown: “Also, an irony: In the 1800s, when genuine problems with vaccines were far more common, clergymen were lining up to support vaccination. Hence, making an issue out of some “pro-vaxxers” being atheist makes one look rather stupid(er).”

    In the spirit of science blogs, David, I give you this. 1800s? HMM. There was a big difference in living conditions that caused or contributed to higher infectious disease deaths. Clergymen were lining up? How many? The majority? only 3? What is your basis for this statement?

    Genuine problems with vaccines? You mean there has been genuine problems in the past? And how does the medical profession usually deal with the public relations of such problems? They minimize the real problem of safety and say the benefits out weigh the risks. Then when a newer medical only solution is available they say “a safer” version is available. Hence admitting that the older one actually DID have safety issues. But only until a newer product is available. Pertussis vaccine?

    1800’s hmm. What vaccines were available back then? I suppose you only mean smallpox? Not the “10,000 vaccines” combined that are reccomended and proclaimed safe. Of course safe is only a relative term to vaccinationists if one looks at their history.

    david b: “making an issue out of some “pro-vaxxers” being atheist makes one look rather stupid(er).”

    No. It doesn’t. An atheist and a believer in any god (Buddah,Allah, mother earth, etc) are going to have different ethics and morals and a different basis for those ethics and morals. They will have a different a priori.

    I believe that most of the hardcore pro mass vaccine propagandists are atheists. Are there those that believe in a god who also push this belief system? of course. But you atheist know how incongruent their positions are when it gets to the core of it.

    The believers need to realize that there is decisions of values that are involved. This is not a pure science decision.

    Do you believe that people are weak and incapable of fighting pathogens? Do you believe that most of us will perish without prophylactic medicine? How do you know which individual will?

    Or do you believe that we were created stronger than that? Do you believe that the living body is endowed with intelligence or created from intelligence or is it just a soup of chemicals that need to be manipulated?

  81. #81 Julian Frost
    June 12, 2010

    @Augustine:

    I believe that most of the hardcore pro mass vaccine propagandists are atheists.

    “Propaganda. You keep using that word. I don’t think it means what you think it means.” Propaganda refers to lies, distortions and misquotes used to bolster a cause. Firstly, where exactly have those of us who support the current vaccination program lied or distorted? Secondly, and to quote one of the others dear Augie, “Project much?”

  82. #82 Zetetic
    June 13, 2010

    David N. Brown @ #279:

    I do believe I’m going to steal this one.

    Glad you liked it. Please feel free.

    ============================================================================================================================
    augustine @ #280:

    No. It doesn’t. An atheist and a believer in any god (Buddah,Allah, mother earth, etc) are going to have different ethics and morals and a different basis for those ethics and morals. They will have a different a priori.

    Bwahahahahahahahah! As if even two different people from the same culture and same religion are likely to share EXACTLY the same morals. Not to mention people from different cultures with the same religion.

    Oh augie, your argument just keeps getting more and more pathetic with your incessant need to rationalize your position rather than just being honest about it.

    Right from the start you came in with your “this is an atheist blog” line of crap, to try and divert everyone from the truth about your position. It did work then and it’s not going to work now. All you’ve done is add another fallacy to your list. Now we’ve got the Excluded Middle Fallacy from you. Do you really think that religious groups that oppose modern medicine are any thing more than a minority among most religious groups? Why do you think that so many religious groups justify using modern medicine, including vaccines, to help others? Because unlike your stated position, most religious institutions place at least some value on minimizing human suffering. The fact is that many that are religious would be appalled by your lack of empathy and shortsighted selfishness.

    So first we have augie “The Invulnerable”, and now it’s augie “The Patron Saint of Pestilence”.

    So tell us augie, if you’re so eager to cowardly and dishonestly hide behind the skirts of religion…

    Exactly where in your religion’s moral guides does it say “Thou shalt not use vaccines”? What about those that are religious that develop vaccines and promote their use to prevent death and suffering? If you’re opposed to vaccines on a religious basis, does your religion also have any prohibits against lying? I noticed that you seem to have no reservations about lying. You also don’t seem to be too big on confession.

    I believe that most of the hardcore pro mass vaccine propagandists are atheists.

    Of course augie, because nobody that disagreed with you could possible be religious, right? Never mind the religious that created and promoted vaccination, and would be embarrassed to have you using religion as a false defense. What was it I said about your pompous, self-righteous arrogance? Now you are even trying to imply a claim that you speak for the religions of the word? What a joke!

    Personally I find it rather amusing that one of the arguments used to defend religion is to point out the work of religious groups in trying to help others through medical care. But here you are augie, trying undermine that same defense to rationalize your own personal and irrational opinion.

    This is not a pure science decision.

    Of course not, it’s also about the ethics of saving human lives. We’ve been saying that for a long time now. But, the science comes down squarely against your position. You yourself have long since conceded that saving lives isn’t even a concern to you.

    Do you believe that people are weak and incapable of fighting pathogens? Do you believe that most of us will perish without prophylactic medicine? How do you know which individual will?

    Oh Goody! Yet another Straw-Man from augie! So tell us aguie, were EXACTLY did anyone on the pro-science side say that, hmmmm?

    You know perfectly well, that the pro-vax side knows that most people will in fact survive measles. Hell, augie, most of Europe survived the bubonic plague too, does that make it OK to just let it run rampant? Granted that is an extreme example, but it’s to illustrate a point. Just because most of a given population will survive a disease…How do you justify NOT doing anything about it, especially when the vaccine is so much safer? How do you justify hundreds of deaths and thousands hospitalized per year just because you’re apparently scared of 2 little (and extremely safe) shots? Please by all means give us any religious justification that doesn’t also rule out most of modern medicine in the process.

    ============================================================================================================
    So tell us augie is your “religious” conviction about vaccines any deeper that a simplistic dogma of “Nature Good, Science Bad”?

    Come on augie…it’s time to “come out of the closet” and tell us the truth for a change.

  83. #83 Zetetic
    June 15, 2010

    Well it looks like augie has decided to duck out of yet another thread.

    I did want to comment on was last thing though (don’t know how I missed it earlier).
    augustine @ #266:

    Answer: Penicillin. Name the scientific first principle that was the foundation for the discovery of antibiotics. There wasn’t one at the time. It was luck and “fortuitous” events combined with observation that led to it’s discovery. There was no skeptic brand of science involved.

    Once again augie…FAIL.

    Yes penicillin was discovered by fortuitous accident, but as usual augie you’re only telling (at best) half the truth. You left out that it was part of a scientific experiment that discovered it in the first place, not looking at the world through “other lenses”. You also left out that it was through study and experimentation (not woo) that it was demonstrate that it was the penicillin, and not something else that was at work. Also, it was through “skeptic brand science” (again, not “other lenses”) that penicillin was proven to help treat some diseases. Also it was again science that eventually found out how it worked and helped lead to other antibiotics too, again not woo.

    So sorry, you still failed to give a credible answer even after all that time to do so. But don’t feel too bad, after all antibiotics is another part of what you call the “war” on disease and “healthy” people probably don’t need antibiotics either right?

  84. #84 Antaeus Feldspar
    July 10, 2010

    Rogue medic: “Children will keep dying from vaccine preventable illnesses.”

    augustine: “This is just rhetoric. It presumes that the death of someone from an infection for which a vaccine has been concocted would have been prevented if that person had been vaccinated. This is IMPOSSIBLE to assess for that person. In fact there is evidence to the contrary.”

    I’m actually glad that our latest Goofus, augustine, chose to use this fallacious gambit again. I sometimes have to be away for a while and spot a delicious fallacy when I’m catching up… too late for it to be really worthwhile to call out the fallacy. So I’m actually quite tickled that the Goofus tried this trick again.

    Here is the claim to which the Goofus replies, in syllogism form:

    1) Out of the people who catch vaccine-preventable diseases, some of them die from those diseases.
    2) Out of the people who would otherwise catch vaccine-preventable diseases but receive vaccinations, many will not in fact catch vaccine-preventable diseases.
    3) Therefore, some of the people we vaccinate against these vaccine-preventable illnesses will be people whose lives are saved because of that vaccination.

    Until Goofus can produce some evidence that premises 1 or 2, or the form of the syllogism, are not correct, we must take the conclusion as true. In other words, the burden of proof is on Goofus. His denial of this fact is … well, it’s just that, denial. “Even though you’ve proven that vaccines save lives I refuse to believe it! I reject any form of proof except a kind that’s impossible, requiring us to have 100% perfect knowledge of what would have happened if we did something that we did not in fact do!”

    Usually when I dissect the arguments of Goofuses I like to find the central fallacy, because much of the time these arguments are taken seriously by people who are sincerely trying to find and understand the truth but who have fallen for someone’s superficially convincing arguments. Here, there is no clear fallacy. There is only a Goofus trying to pretend that he never needs to be bound by the rules of debate under which reasonable adults operate. The pro-science people have proven that vaccines save lives. Goofus can try to challenge the components of the proof, if he likes, but what he cannot do is deny that the burden of proof is now on him.

  85. #85 David N. Brown
    July 11, 2010

    “This is just rhetoric. It presumes that the death of someone from an infection for which a vaccine has been concocted would have been prevented if that person had been vaccinated.”

    I see. So, according to an anti-vaxxer, if a child is diagnosed with autism after receiving a vaccine, it must be a vaccine injury. But if somebody dies of a vaccine-preventable disease after not receiving a “scheduled” vaccine against it, THAT could just be coincidence.

  86. #86 Black Smith
    December 22, 2011

    A person with ASD will typically also prefer to stick to a set of behaviors and will resist any major (and many minor) changes to daily activities. Several relatives and friends of people with ASDs have commented that if the person knows a change is coming in advance, and has time to prepare for it; the resistance to the change is either gone completely or is much lower.

  87. #87 Mary Rojo
    January 4, 2012

    I can’t be so sure now if vaccines are for real since many vaccine scandals are aired now in media. We can’t be so sure if vaccines are good for autistic children too.

  88. #88 Calli Arcale
    January 4, 2012

    Mary — you *can* be sure. You aren’t sure, because of what you’ve read, but you can change that, if you’re willing to put in a little effort. Go beyond the press releases of groups like Age of Autism. Read the science. There is plenty of evidence that vaccines cause far more good than harm, and that it is less risky to use them than to not. (Can you be injured by a vaccine? Yes. You are much more likely to be injured by the disease the vaccine protects against, though, so it’s really not difficult to decide where to put your chips. Are there specific risk factors? A few, primarily allergies to vaccine ingredients; these are manageable, so make sure you tell your doctor if you have any known allergies, or if you have any known immune dysfunction, or any other concerns you may have.)

    As for autistic children, why don’t you think what’s good for normal children is good for autistic children too? I know autistic people can seem very strange, with puzzling mannerisms and sometimes explosive outbursts, but they are actually largely the same as the rest of us. Vaccines work the same in them as they do in the rest of us. And they deserve protection just as much as all other children.

    You might ask “what about Hannah Poling?”, a girl whose parents claim she became autistic because of a vaccine. Well, her case is more complicated than that. She has a genetic mitochondrial disorder which makes her susceptible to brain damage following a fever. Any fever. That includes fevers provoked by vaccines, of course, but the vast majority of fevers that children get have nothing to do with vaccines — it’s consequently impossible to say that the vaccine was what caused her specific fever. Indeed, since children like her are at such high risk from fevers, it is *more* important to vaccinate them, so as to reduce the number of fevers they get over the lifetime. The thing about vaccine fevers is that you know about them ahead of time, and you can give medications to prevent the fever. So her case is, in my opinion, actually a case *for* vaccination of the autistic.

    Bottom line: there is plenty of science to make your decisions, if you can get past the mess the media often makes of it. And autistic children deserve protection as much as any children do.

    BTW, Black Smith, that is my experience also. When my daughter has adequate warning of a change, she tends to handle it just fine. Her adaptability has improved with age as well, as she learns how to do the things that come more naturally to other children. That’s one of the oft-overlooked things about ASDs; the children aren’t really frozen, and they are capable of progress and often quite amazing things.

  89. #89 lilady
    January 4, 2012

    Excellent Post Calli…somehow I doubt that Mary “Carpet Cleaner” Rojo and Black “Plumber” Smith are sincere when they post here.

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