As I wing my way back home from Orlando, fresh from having imbibed deeply of the latest and greatest in cancer research, I didn’t really have the opportunity to generate a typical Orac-ian post. Fortunately for me (or unfortunately, depending on your point of view), a commenter named Erwin Alber popped up in the comments of a year and a half old post to demonstrate once again the self-delusion at the heart of the claim of many in the anti-vaccine movement. Take it away, Erwin:

There is no scientific evidence to show that vaccines have ever prevented anything, apart from health, sanity and common sense. As far as I am concerned, vaccination is an organised criminal enterprise dressed up as disease prevention and people who believe in vaccinations are suffering from brain-washing-induced delusional insanity.

Yep, according to Erwin, those of us who defend the science of vaccines against pseudoscientific, fear mongering attacks by anti-vaccine zealots are not just insane, but brain-washed and delusional. (I suppose the delusional goes along with the insanity.) Not only that, but Erwin truly seems to believe that vaccines have never prevented a single disease and are an “organized criminal enterprise.”

No, Erwin’s not anti-vaccine at all. Oh, no. Neither are the minions who show up regularly on Age of Autism and spew the same sorts of nonsence–or AoA itself, whose editors tolerate–and even encourage–such idiocy in its comments but ruthlessly censor anyone who questions the anti-vaccine party line.

Oh, no, they’re not anti-vaccine at all, not a single one of them.

I will thank Erwin for one thing, though. I found him on Facebook. It’s got to be him, he had listed under music the execrable anti-vaccine one man band The Refusers, as well as links to various homeopathy pages and Let’s Keep Vaccinations Out Of School. More importantly, he’s apparently the founder of an anti-vaccine Facebook page called the Vaccine Information Network. Through Erwin’s Facebook page, I found that two of my Facebook friends were mutual friends of Erwin’s.

I unfriended them.

If I don’t personally know (or at least know through the Internet) a Facebook friend whom I find has friended an anti-vaccine loon, out that Facebook friend goes! True, it might just be a skeptic monitoring the loons (I do the same thing on occasion), but I have no way of knowing that. So, in such a situation, if I don’t recognize the name as a bona fide skeptic (like Peter Bowditch or someone else whom I know or know of), it’s goodbye. In any case, besides providing me with yet another brief post in this particular series, I guess Erwin’s thread necromancy did serve a useful purpose after all.

Thanks, Erwin!

Comments

  1. #1 Gray Falcon
    April 8, 2011

    “Smart”, by proven effectiveness, do you mean they observed it carefully and measured it against the effectiveness of conventional treatment? Or did they just ignore every problem and attribute every improvement to the treatment? Humans are fallible, and to learn, one must be humble enough to accept that one is capable of error and bias. Most scientists do so, and this is how they are able to learn so much.

  2. #2 augustine
    April 8, 2011

    Gary

    Humans are fallible, and to learn, one must be humble enough to accept that one is capable of error and bias. Most scientists do so, and this is how they are able to learn so much.

    I say they are cocky arrogant pricks just like lawyers, doctors, gamblers, pro athletes, or any other profession. Do you have any evidence sans anecdotes that they have higher adherence to ethical and moral standards than any other ordinary citizen or profession?

    No you don’t.

  3. #3 Gray Falcon
    April 8, 2011

    I say they are cocky arrogant pricks just like lawyers, doctors, gamblers, pro athletes, or any other profession. Do you have any evidence sans anecdotes that they have higher adherence to ethical and moral standards than any other ordinary citizen or profession?

    Look in any scientific journal. If scientists were as arrogant as you say they are (and I use the term in a very specific way), they wouldn’t go around testing their hypotheses, they’d just be declaring how brilliant they are for coming up with an idea and insist it’s right, no matter what. You know, like “Doctor Smart”.

  4. #4 augustine
    April 8, 2011

    Look in any scientific journal.

    Exactly. No evidence. Just a rhetorical statement.

    If lawyers were as arrogant then they wouldn’t test their arguments in a court of law. They would just walk out of the courtroom with their client.

    So if a scientist tests his hypothesis then he has absconded himself from ego?

    All published scientist therefore are humble as pie, meek little servants with the utmost standards and adherence of ethics and morals.

  5. #5 Gray Falcon
    April 8, 2011

    Exactly. No evidence. Just a rhetorical statement.

    I could point out any number of published studies that determined a hypothesis was incorrect. Maybe somebody else here could provide an example?

    If lawyers were as arrogant then they wouldn’t test their arguments in a court of law. They would just walk out of the courtroom with their client.

    Exactly. They might take pride in understanding that they know the law, but they know that they are not perfect, and that trials must take place.

    So if a scientist tests his hypothesis then he has absconded himself from ego?

    No, just hubris.

    All published scientist therefore are humble as pie, meek little servants with the utmost standards and adherence of ethics and morals.

    I wouldn’t go that far, but they are better than you are.

  6. #6 Narad
    April 8, 2011

    So if a scientist tests his hypothesis then he has absconded himself from ego?

    “Abscond” is intransitive, Augustine. What I’m actually curious about, though, is what you mean by “ego.”

  7. #7 Lawrence
    April 8, 2011

    Boring troll has advanced to the “idiot” phase – repeating blown past arguments “ad infinitum.”

    Seriously, get a grip – you’ve become a boor & don’t interest us anymore. Go away & come back when you can bring some truly crazy – otherwise, you’ve just wasted our bandwith.

  8. #8 herr doktor bimler
    April 9, 2011

    cocky arrogant pricks just like lawyers, doctors, gamblers, pro athletes, or any other profession.

    I am saddened by so much cynicism and misanthropy in one so young.

  9. #9 lilady
    April 9, 2011

    The troll provides us with some amusement with its crazy rants. It hangs around here to stick its nose into intelligent discussions. Probably less risky than prowling shopping malls and hanging around street corners annoying shoppers and pedestrians.

    Troll possibly has some masochistic tendencies as well…it keeps coming back for the intellectual drubbing it gets, each and every time it posts.

    Troll needs a job but is unqualified because it has no education or skills and is lazy as well. Troll is well qualified to stay on the dole.

  10. #10 Doctor I.M. Smart
    April 9, 2011

    @gay falcon who muttered “Humans are fallible, and to learn, one must be humble enough to accept that one is capable of error and bias. Most scientists do so, and this is how they are able to learn so much.”

    If that were treu there would be several hundred “scientists” and European marxist elites in prison right now for the largest scam in human history – climate change!

    Do you know who got this so called climate change hoax started? The Club of Rome! In 1993, they published a paper called “The First Global Revolution” that basically outlined the use of the environment as a means to redistribute and help creat their global government. Global warming is all about power, control, and wealth redistribution and has zero to do with actual climate. Everyone involved should be charged with fraud and thrown in solitary for the rest of their life.

    Look this paper up and read it for yourself. The whole thing is a well planned marxist bullshit scam that should be punished.

    So called “scientitists” were studying climate long before this fascist control freak radical group published that deserves to be burned paper of theirs. However, it was The Club Of Rome that got the ball rolling on people stealing our wealth in the name of a worldwide hoax.

    Then again, people who believe they are related to monkeys are easily duped.

  11. #11 Narad
    April 9, 2011

    Do you know who got this so called climate change hoax started? The Club of Rome!

    And who do you think is behind this site? That’s right, you’ve got a new gig as Bilderboytoy coming right up behind you. Leave a note on the off chance that anyone who notices your absence responds with anything but relief.

  12. #12 adelady
    April 9, 2011

    Club of Rome? 1993? They’re a bit late to the party.

    Bit hard for John Tyndall to be a Marxist – he published his observations on greenhouse gases in 1859 – 8 years *before* Das Kapital hit the shops. Don’t know anything about Arrhenius’ political leanings in 1896. And we know, absolutely and for certain that Gilbert Plass published his papers in 1956 and 1959 on greenhouse and carbon dioxide from an obvious bias *against* any such political leanings.

  13. #13 Gray Falcon
    April 9, 2011

    “Doctor Smart”, as a fellow Christian and brother in the faith, I will address you with all the kindness I would give my own brother in this situation. You’re an idiot.

  14. #14 Doctor I.M. Smart
    April 9, 2011

    I am not talking about carbon dioxide. It is natural. it comes from volcanoes and ocean vents and of course from us too, but man’s carbon output is barely even visible in comparison to natural occuring carbon dioxide.

    I am talking about using that greenhouse gas scientific fact as a way to gain power and control. They could have used a gigantic asteroid threat just the same. The fact remains that we have been duped and now it’s jail time from these goobers.

    Who cares about 1800s gases? We are talking about a group, socialists, who use facts and exploit them and blow them up out of proportion in order to fund their entire quest of power and global governance. haven’t you been reading the news? How much money do we spend on this crap overseas? I say cut it. Cut the UN, cut, the IMF, cut the World Bank, cut the FED, and let’s get back to the real world. Cut these dmons from out money trail and use it wisely and frugally here at home where it belongs instead of funding some goober’s thirst for wealth redistribution in Europe. To hell with Europe. They are so far gone down the crapper, that they can never return back to normal again. Let’s pray we never go down their path of tyranny.

    As for global warming, I say in the budget cut proposals, we strip money from any individual, group, campus, organization, country or anything in existsnce that even mentions climate change. That should take care of thei wealth redistribution bullcrap and shut them up too.

  15. #15 Gray Falcon
    April 9, 2011

    [citation needed]

  16. #16 NJ
    April 9, 2011

    dim @ 114:

    To hell with Europe. They are so far gone down the crapper, that they can never return back to normal again.

    From here:

    “Unemployment in Germany is already at its lowest level since the country reunified in 1990 but the buoyant economy is poised to drive down jobless lines further, with the rate seen at 6.9 this year and 6.5 percent in 2012.”

    The problem you have is that you honestly believe the people who tell you what to think are truthful. But we have shown those people to be actively misleading you. Your anger is a function of your deeply hidden fear that we are right and you have wasted your life. This also explains the brain-damaged posts on your blog.

    So run away, little dim one, Facts are not your friends!

  17. #17 passionlessDrone
    April 10, 2011

    We are talking about a group, socialists, who use facts and exploit them and blow them up out of proportion in order to fund their entire quest of power and global governance.

    You are a goddamned idiot.

    – pD

  18. #18 Travis
    April 10, 2011

    pD, I want to praise you for the succinct and appropriate reply. It is a nice follow-up to NJ’s post.

  19. #19 lilady
    April 10, 2011

    He’s not my kind of Christian either. Sounds like he has been reading too many “conspiracy” blogs; also sounds like an anarchist.

  20. #20 Militant Agnostic
    April 10, 2011

    NJ@116

    So run away, little dim one, Facts are not your friends!

    As Stephen Colbert said “Reality has a liberal bias”

    PD@117 – Mr. I.M. Stunned wouldn’t know a fact if it bit him on the ass.

  21. #21 dedicated lurker
    April 10, 2011

    I wonder: how can you be that stupid and still manage to swallow without aspiration?

  22. #22 rw23
    April 10, 2011

    Not-So-Smart@114

    Is this one of the “European Marxist elites” you’re so concerned about?

    http://www.margaretthatcher.org/document/108237

  23. #23 augustine
    April 10, 2011

    Retired sociopathic nurse lady

    The troll provides us with some amusement with its crazy rants. It hangs around here to stick its nose into intelligent discussions.

    The only one who engages in intelligent discussion on here is Passionless Drone.

    You have the perception of amusement because you are sitting in the stands as a heckling spectator. An arm chair quarterback. A skeptic wannabe.

    Just like the loudmouth in the stands, you can’t do it alone by yourself in the stadium. You require the fuel from your fellow wannabe skeptic spectators. You are an entertainer performing for your crowd, just like all of the other SBM hecklers.

    At the end of the day you’re just the local county nurse with delusions of grandeur.

  24. #24 Agashem
    April 10, 2011

    Local county nurse knows a lot more than home schooled teenager. Sorry but couldn’t let the troll have the last post.

  25. #25 todthegod
    April 10, 2011

    At the end of the day you’re just the local county nurse with delusions of grandeur.

    And you’re the King of Your Mother’s Basement.

  26. #26 Gray Falcon
    April 10, 2011

    And you’re the King of Your Mother’s Basement.

    Okay, this has been bothering me for a while, so here goes: If you’re going to say anything about augustine, say things that we can at least determine from seeing him online. Insults like that are childish and unproductive. More acceptable insults: Stupid, childish, arrogant, stupid, hateful, spiteful, stupid, Randian, stupid, and stupid.

  27. #27 LW
    April 10, 2011

    You forgot ignorant.

  28. #28 LW
    April 10, 2011

    You also forgot innumerate. Here we see the troll ignorantly asking, “Does it really matter how many 9s after 4 decimal places?” when challenged on its assertion that measles patients survived without sequelae 99.9999+% of the time.

  29. #29 novalox
    April 10, 2011

    @Gray Falcon

    Don’t forget hypocrite.

    How else could one describe a “Christian” person constantly resorting to childish and churlish taunts and ad hominems?

  30. #30 Chris
    April 10, 2011

    Also, do not forget misogynist.

  31. #31 Gray Falcon
    April 10, 2011

    Ah yes, how could I forget those… I must be slipping.

  32. #32 AnthonyK
    April 10, 2011

    A few more: pompous, logorrheic (and no, words don’t count if you don’t know what they mean), sociopathic, vacuous, relentlessly boring, isolated, creepy, and stupid.
    Did anyone mention stupid?
    The sort of idiot who thinks that Thesaurus killed the dinosaur.
    Yo, useless, how’re the kids?
    Snort snort.
    Hey you do know that is takes someone else, right?
    (On second thought, Let’s say nothing.)

    But on the plus side…………………

  33. #33 Denice Walter
    April 10, 2011

    @ Gray Falcon: I doubt *you’d* ever slip! But, even if you did, never fear: you will be assisted _immediately_ by the “hand of the dark blog-osphere”** and its many fingers ( a/k/a minions).

    ** i.e. Orac. A new – and somewhat creative- appellation by someone who doesn’t like us very much.

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