Respectful Insolence

X Minus One for vaccination

Yesterday was a bit of a rough patch; so today there won’t be the usual Orac magnum opus to which you’ve all become accustomed. Instead, maybe I’ll do a briefer post with semi-random thoughts. Of course, even Orac’s shorter posts are longer than the average blog post; so you’re still getting your money’s worth. Oh, wait. The blog is free. Never mind.

First up, as I’ve mentioned before, over the last couple of years, I’ve gotten into old time radio through Radio Classics. The other day, I happened to be listening to an episode of the 1950s science fiction radio show X Minus One. The specific episode was based on a story by Robert Scheckley, The Native Problem. The story was a rather straightforward story about a future misfit who decides he couldn’t live in civilization anymore and had himself marooned on an uninhabited planet. Later, a group of colonists arrives. The central misunderstanding in the story is that the colonists won’t believe that the protagonist is not a native of the planet, and they fear he represents thousands of natives who will attack.

What attracted my attention, though, wasn’t so much the story, which, while amusing and entertaining, wasn’t anything out of the ordinary or particularly memorable. Rather, it was a public service announcement right in the middle of the story. I’ll give a little context here and point out that this episode aired in 1957. The audio is here, and the PSA starts around the 7:03 mark:

Friends, for as many years as any of us can remember, the sadness that polio has brought to so many homes has been almost unparalleled. But a greater sadness than this lies ahead for any who from now on catch polio: Because it may be due to carelessness. Vaccination against polio, the well-known Salk shots, is more than 75% effective. And it’s due to such vaccination that there was a drop of 47% in polio cases last year. But this year, vaccination has been lagging. There are 108 million persons under 40, and of these only 45 million have had as much as one shot of the vaccine. And please remember that while the first and second shots are helpful the third shot is necessary for maximum protection. Now there’s plenty of vaccine and the doctors are anxious to cooperate. Remember, the end of polio is at hand, but it takes three visits to the doctor to lick it. Can you afford not to go?

I also found a Canadian PSA, that also gives you the idea:

This got me to thinking. Polio had been a scourge for decades before the Salk polio vaccine. Between 1916 and the 1950s, polio outbreaks occurred every summer in at least one region of the U.S., resulting in scares in which public swimming pools were closed and people avoided public gatherings. The worst outbreaks occurred in the 1940s and 1950s, not long before the Salk vaccine was introduced. In 1949, for instance, there were 2,720 deaths from polio in the U.S. and 42,173 cases. The image of the iron lung was a familiar one, as were the leg braces that so many victims of infantile paralysis wore. Most people knew someone (or knew someone who knew someone) who had suffered from polio. Polio quarantine cards were an all-too-common site. If you were alive and old enough to appreciate a show like “X Minus One” in 1957, chances are very good that you were aware of this and had reason to fear polio.

This was only 55 years ago. People in their mid-sixties and older remember this time.

Yet, in 1957, there was the need for a PSA like this. Vaccination rates were apparently falling off to the point where public health officials were concerned enough to start running ads like this. To me, this PSA shows the power of complacency and inertia, more than anything else. There was no significant antivaccine movement in the 1950s, certainly not in the wake of the success of the polio vaccine. Even in an environment in which there were still polio outbreaks and very severe polio outbreaks had occurred less than a decade before, human nature and its complacency had apparently already begun to reassert itself only a couple of years after the early mass vaccination campaigns against polio had begun.

In light of how thoroughly so many infectious diseases that once ravaged the land have now been brought under control through vaccination, this 1957 PSA made me marvel at how well we have thus far managed to keep vaccination rates high and keep those diseases under check. Complacency is still there, and now most of us have never seen a case of so many of the infectious diseases that we used to fear. Perhaps the best example is Hib, which used to cause horrific disease in children as recently as the late 1980s and early 1990s. Then the Hib vaccine was introduced, and it’s not a major problem anymore. Indeed, many pediatricians trained since the mid-1990s have never seen a case.

Given most people’s lack of personal experience with the diseases we vaccinate against, it’s actually rather amazing how well vaccination rates have held up in light of how easily complacency sets in again. We apparently have done pretty well combatting the effects of inertia and complacency when it comes to vaccines, but now there’s another force working to undermine hard-won gains in vaccination rates: An antivaccine movement that spreads fear, uncertainty, and doubt through misinformation and pseudoscience. Battling the natural tendency towards complacency is difficult enough, but how do we prevent the combination of complacency and fear stoked by misinformation from causing a slide back towards the situation in the middle of the last century, when multiple diseases that are now under control stalked the land. The problem is that, although they are under reasonably good control now, they are not by any stretch of the imagination gone, and it wouldn’t take a huge fall in vaccination rates over large areas to bring back the bad old days. Right now, we’re relatively lucky in that outbreaks have tended to be local and associated with pockets of antivaccine sentiment. It wouldn’t take a huge fall in vaccination rates to provide an opening for those diseases to spread more widely.

I hope it doesn’t come to that.

Comments

  1. #1 Shay
    April 19, 2012

    Born in 1955 — you’re preaching to the converted. I had every childhood disease and then some, and so did my six brothers and sisters. I can’t believe my mother didn’t go stark raving mad (especially the time three of us were down with chickenpox, simultaneously).

    I almost– almost — comprehend why a young parent today might not realize the need for vaccinations, but where are the grandparents? Why is my generation not out thumping these kids upside the head?

  2. #2 lilady
    April 19, 2012

    A comment from a more *senior* poster.

    I presume I received DPT vaccines in early infancy and was scheduled to receive a smallpox vaccine before entering school, when there was an outbreak of smallpox in NYC, where I grew up. I was taken to the local firehouse for the vaccine.

    After losing a childhood chum to polio, all the kids in the neighborhood did receive the Salk vaccine, as soon as it became available, at a local public health clinic.

    Like “Shay”, we all had measles mumps and rubella diseases, although after I had my first child in 1970 and before I got pregnant with my second child in 1975, I was tested for rubella and was not immune. I received the single antigen rubella vaccine, months before I got pregnant.

    Even though I had private medical insurance, I had to pay out-of-pocket for each of my children’s vaccines (DPT, separate antigen M-M-R and Smallpox vaccine for my older child out-of-pocket in 1971).

    The passage of legislation to make vaccine free-of-charge through the VFC (Vaccine for Children) Program, enabled parents to get each childhood vaccine free-of-charge…if they were uninsured, had inadequate insurance or were on Medicaid:

    http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/programs/vfc/parents/default.htm

    “In 1989 – 1991, a measles epidemic in the United States resulted in tens of thousands of cases of measles and hundreds of deaths. Upon investigation, CDC found that more than half of the children who had measles had not been immunized, even though many of them had seen a health care provider.

    In partial response to that epidemic, Congress passed the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (OBRA) on August 10, 1993, creating the Vaccines for Children (VFC) Program. VFC became operational October 1, 1994. Known as section 1928 of the Social Security Act, the Vaccines for Children program is an entitlement program (a right granted by law) for eligible children, age 18 and below…..”

  3. #3 Denice Walter
    April 19, 2012

    Progress has been made in eradicating polio through concerted effort by governments and international organisations: currently a few “hot spots” remain in Afghanistan, Pakistan, India and Nigeria. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, UNICEF, WHO( GPEI) and Rotary International are amongst those combatting this scourge.
    And yes, they take donations.

  4. #4 BA
    April 19, 2012

    My father is a survivor of polio. He is one of the lucky ones who survived though he suffers greatly from the effects (one leg considerably shorter than the other; his hips and knees are shot, he’s in pretty constant discomfort from “post-polio syndrome” – he’s gradually losing the ability to walk). And yes, this has had a significant impact on me in that I was told the stories of what it was like (though most poignantly by my grandmother) and how wonderful the scientists were who were working on developing vaccines against childhood diseases. I also had measles and pertussis as a child. One of my children has had pertussis and chicken pox. Donate and educate!

  5. #5 HP
    April 19, 2012

    First of all, OTR is addictive, isn’t it? I love X Minus One, and I can’t figure out why SFF fandom hasn’t embraced it. I’m sure I’d read Robert Scheckley when I was a teen, and eagerly devouring old Analogs and Astoundings, but it wasn’t until I heard the dramatic adaptations of Sheckley on X Minus One that I realized what a genius he was.

    That said, one of my earliest memories is of a late polio outbreak that occurred on the shores of Lake Michigan in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I must’ve been maybe four years old — this was around 1968-69. The reason I remember it is that I remember my parents’ fear. Palpable, overriding fear that kept myself and my sisters away from the lake until we could be vaccinated. I’m given to understand that I was very brave, and got a lollipop afterwards. I don’t remember that. I remember Mom and Dad being scared.

    (On OTR and PSAs: Listen to The Mysterious Traveler, and look out for the episode that’s interrupted by “And now, a special message from the War Department.” History!)

  6. #6 tgobbi
    April 19, 2012

    Orac mentions that polio outbreaks were at a maximum in the 1940s and 1950s – just before the vaccines became available. Several years ago I was discussing (well, arguing, actually) this topic with a virulently anti-medicine “doctor” of chiropractic who claimed that the decline in polio was only coincidental to introduction of the vaccine. He cited improvements in sanitation as the true reason for the decline. It shows once again that when proponents and exponents of pseudoscience get a bug up their — er, that should read, get a bug in their ear about something they’ll never let the facts interfere with their belief systems. And we, according to them, are the ones with closed minds…

    I’m old enough to remember the polio scares of the time and in fact I’m a first-generation vaccine recipient. The panic at the time was the equivalent of the “red scare.” Parents wouldn’t let their kids go out in public during July and August. When I went to summer camp no younger brothers or sisters were allowed to come along on parents’ visiting weekends. Salk and Sabin put an end to all this, at least in the civilized parts of the world.

  7. #7 adelady
    April 19, 2012

    I can remember shocking the neighbours when I was about 10 years old. I told them I’d had “whooping cough” – of course I had no idea what I was talking about. I’d had a horrible cold, probably a touch of bronchitis as a bonus. But of course I was a post war baby and we’d all had some version of DTP. (I remember my mother talking about how it was my first shot when I was 6 months or so that made me afraid of strangers – when she blithely handed me over when getting on and off buses, as she’d always done before, I made an awful fuss.) Unlike the USA, these shots were always a public health measure. You could have them at the local council offices entirely for free or you could pay for a doctor’s appointment – but the vaccine itself was free for everyone.

    And I remember the horse sized syringes they used for polio. No need to go anywhere, they came to us at school. No individual shots then. The gigantic thing probably had enough for twenty kids. I don’t remember our school having to shut down for outbreaks, but my husband remembers his school shutting down several times for a fortnight or more.

  8. #8 Denice Walter
    April 19, 2012

    Although you might think that today’s anti-vaccinationists and natural health advocates who speak of the “folly” of vaccinating against “mild” childhood diseases ( measles, mumps et al) would have the common sense and decency to support vaccines for a truly devastating illness like polio- you would be wrong!

    Using the search function, I found scores of articles that oppose polio vaccination, past and present ( Age of Autism, Natural News, Gary Null.com): these include bizarre theorising and pernicious conspiracy mongering. The labelling of the Gates’ efforts as *eugenics* is truly one of the worst things I’ve ever heard from these dissemblers- and I’ve heard many extremely despicable things. Their position is illustrative of the entire movement’s disregard of reality and others’ suffering.

  9. #9 palindrom
    April 19, 2012

    Shay @1 –

    Why is my generation not out thumping these kids upside the head?

    I’m pushing 60 — hell, almost pushed it over by now — and I remember polio too. I was talking to a junior colleague who has an infant, and was going to urge him to be sure his baby got her shots, but it proved to be unnecessary — no way in hell he’s not going vaccinate his kid.

    Then again, he’s a scientist (and a really, really good one), so he has a healthy respect for (a) standards of evidence and (b) causality.

    Very refreshing.

  10. #10 Shay
    April 19, 2012

    Denice@8: when the only tool you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

  11. #11 Composer99
    April 19, 2012

    With regards to Orac’s musings on how vaccination rates have remained reasonably high despite natural tendencies to forgetfulness and complacency (even without taking into account today’s more virulent anti-vaccine movement, which takes advantage of these factors), I wonder what role social reinforcement has had in maintaining these rates – you go get your kids their vaccines because it’s just one of those things that you do.

    In fact, some of that forgetfulness & complacency is probably behind adults not occasionally checking their immunity & getting boosters (especially for pertussis), which is why adults, even those who aren’t anti-vaccine, can become unwitting reservoirs for transmission.

  12. #12 Queen Khentkawes
    April 19, 2012

    I was born just in time for the polio vaccine. A relative wasn’t so lucky, and he wears a leg brace to this day.

    Later on in grade school, we used to get the liquid vaccine on a sugar cube. Does anyone else remember this?

    On another note, the bird and I listen to OTR too. GrisGris can whistle the fanfare at the beginning of the program!

  13. #13 squirrelelite
    April 19, 2012

    For a similar reminder about vaccines, watch the first few minutes of the 1968 movie, Bullitt. Check the third scene about 8 minutes into the movie.

    Bullitt’s partner, Delghetti, reads him a front page article about the government announcing the availability of a mumps vaccine!

  14. #14 rw23
    April 19, 2012

    @Queen Khentkawes #12:

    Later on in grade school, we used to get the liquid vaccine on a sugar cube. Does anyone else remember this?

    I certainly do. I remember very clearly being given the polio vaccine via a dropper on a sugar cube when I was four years old, in the first year of primary school (I’m in the UK). All the medical check-ups (vaccinations, eye tests, hearing tests, general development) took place in the headmaster’s office, and we’d troop in, one after the other, in alphabetical order. I was always last and bored silly by the time it was my turn. But at least this one was a sugar cube and not the horse hypodermic Adelady describes!

  15. #15 anon
    April 19, 2012

    I am in my early 40s. I have an uncle in his 70s who had polio as a child…he has suffered greatly his entire life and was physically disabled in his 40s, due to injuries that likely would have only briefly slowed him down if he had not had polio as a child. I have worked in children’s hospitals and have seen death via chicken pox (due to no vaccine and impaired immune system)…it was a horrible, horrible way for anyone to die, much less a child. It horrifies and infuriates me that my generation can be so clueless as to the dangers of these diseases.

  16. #16 rw23
    April 19, 2012

    Oops, sorry, I forgot to say that would be in 1968-9. Dunno how that compares with its introduction in the States.

  17. #17 Liz Ditz
    April 19, 2012

    Here’s some of the right-wing anti-vaccine karazee

    This is in reference to the California Assembly Committee on Health hearing on AB 2109, which was discussed here previously. The hearing was on Tuesday. People wanting to know more about AB 2109 can click on my name; I’ve started a new blog specifically on AB 2109.

    Debate over a vaccine bill injected drama into a hearing of the Assembly Health Committee in the California Legislature Tuesday. Legislators ignored parental concerns. And the Capitol sergeants brutalized parents holding infants.

    What should have been a hearing addressing parental concerns in a democracy turned into Lobby Day for the California Medical Association and hundreds of public health doctors, medical school students and other medical practitioners who flooded the hearing room in support of AB 2109 by Assemblyman Richard Pan, D-Sacramento, himself a medical doctor.

    The unspeakable issue at the root of Pan’s bill is the influx of children from other countries into California’s public schools, who bring with them new strains of measles, mumps, chicken pox and flu bugs, among other communicable diseases. Children who have recently traveled out of the country also bring home infectious diseases.

    I think what the author is raving about is that California’s recent pertussis outbreak was had a greater morbidity and mortality in the Hispanic population. Of course, being Hispanic is not the same as “being from another country”.

    The article also paints Bob Sears and the other anti-vaccine misinformers in a positive light.

  18. #18 Bronze Dog
    April 19, 2012

    I always remember my grandmother when history lessons about disease come up. She took biology in college during an era of heavy discrimination. She also did a lot of genealogy as a hobby. She knew what she was talking about both in terms of personal experience and as a scientifically informed person. Disease was common and fatal in her time, and vaccination changed that.

    And the anti-vaxxers would call her a liar.

  19. #19 Zach Miller
    April 19, 2012

    Hell, the anti-vaxx nuts of today would probably say that whatever radio station originally played X Minus One was owned by Big Pharma.

  20. #20 Hyperion
    April 19, 2012

    Trying to locate a paper which concluded something like:

    “X% of asperger’s who attempted or completed suicide were judged to be at no risk of suicide by their health professionals”

    X is shockingly high, memory fails me on the exact value. The study was a few years ago, this article reminded me:

    http://www.examiner.co.uk/news/local-west-yorkshire-news/2012/04/19/bullied-autistic-boy-killed-by-train-in-marsden-was-failed-by-health-and-social-agencies-say-coroner-86081-30795483/

  21. #21 Kelly M Bray
    April 19, 2012

    @ Queen Khentkawes.

    I remember lining up in the elementary school cafeteria for my sugar cube with the drop of vaccine on it. My parents were so happy. I understand now why. I was too young to understand why so many kids a little older than me had braces or wheel chairs. Makes we want to go bitch slap an anti-vaxxer.

  22. #22 palindrom
    April 19, 2012

    I have a vivid memory from first or second grade, of lining up in the school hallway and filing past a person who gave us each a pink sugar cube with polio vaccine on it. This must have been 1958 or 1959, I believe. I’d already gotten a shot from my very nice pediatrician with the thick German accent, who was, looking back, almost certainly a Holocaust survivor. I remember thinking it was great I didn’t have to get a shot!

    The polio vaccine was rightly considered a medical miracle, and even as a little kid I could sense how grateful and relieved people were to have it.

  23. #23 Sid Offit
    April 19, 2012

    In 1989 – 1991, a measles epidemic in the United States resulted in tens of thousands of cases of measles and hundreds of deaths.

    CDC is incorrect. There were ~136 deaths, not “hundreds.”

  24. #24 Science Mom
    April 19, 2012

    @ Liz:

    AB 2109 passed the committee, 10-4.According to Winkler, the hearing Tuesday was a failure of the political system. Winkler found that Monning’s bias prevented all information from being discussed. Winkler said that, in the 15 years she has been testifying at hearings, she has never had so little time to speak, nor been cut off so many times.

    Good I say. Dawn Winkler is as dishonest as they come for anti-vaxx misinformation. I hope this is a sign that these fringe lunatics aren’t going to get their representation any more and government officials pandering to the false equivalence of vaccine safety and efficacy.

  25. #25 Science Mom
    April 19, 2012

    CDC is incorrect. There were ~136 deaths, not “hundreds.”

    Nope, retrospective analyses of deaths during that period were shown to have vastly under-reported measles cases and deaths. I have shared this information with you on numerous occasions. Just because you don’t like the numbers doesn’t mean you get to ignore the evidence (honestly that is).

  26. #26 Composer99
    April 19, 2012

    Cite, Sid? Considering your record here, taking your word for it isn’t an option.

  27. #27 JGC
    April 19, 2012

    Only 136, not hundreds? Whew! For a moment I thought the problem was serious, but surely we can ignore 136 people dying for no good reason, right?

  28. #28 Zach Miller
    April 19, 2012

    So can we infer that Sid’s “number of deaths it takes to make vaccination acceptable” is above 136?

  29. #29 Sid Offit
    April 19, 2012

    http://www.immunize-utah.org/public/vpdci_factsheet.htm

    ——————-

    In 1957 many people had no interest in the polio vaccine. They must have seen through the NFIP hype.

    Polio a scourge in the 20’s, 30s and 40s? Not really.

    Source of widespread dreadful affliction and devastation such as that caused by pestilence or war.

    There were between 2 and 10 cases per 100,000 up till 1945. Hardly a “scourge.’ Language like yours Orac shows you are not credible.

    And could someone help me understand how polio was caused by improved hygenic conditions yet, according to the WHO, the disease afflicted third world countries such as India, China and those of Africa as much as the USA.

    And why a big outbreak in 1916 then decades of relative quiescence until a major increase after WWII. Did it get clean, then dirty, then clean again?

  30. #30 Science Mom
    April 19, 2012

    And why a big outbreak in 1916 then decades of relative quiescence until a major increase after WWII. Did it get clean, then dirty, then clean again?

    This is exactly why people like you aren’t qualified to comment as you do about infectious disease, let alone make medical decisions based upon such ignorance for your children. Anyone who understands even a modicum of epidemiology should know the reasons for this.

  31. #31 lilady
    April 19, 2012

    I was running out the door when I posted at #2 above. My children, born 1970 and 1976…also got the OPV in infancy, via drops, while lying on the pediatrician’s examination table.

    3-2-1 Waiting for Offal to argue, once again, that large polio outbreaks were not seen in urban areas…after sanitation had improved.

    I grew up in Brooklyn and guess what?…We had “city” water and “city” waste sewers. We even had an indoor bathroom :-)

  32. #32 Sid Offit
    April 19, 2012

    Excellent reply, Science Mom. Your grasp of the issue is unmatched.

  33. #33 Lynxreign
    April 19, 2012

    Oh please Sid. You’re not even able to grasp what the issue is. You love denying history, are you one of those that also claims the Holocaust didn’t happen? We didn’t land on the moon? Elvis is alive somewhere?

  34. #34 Todd W.
    April 19, 2012

    @Sid

    There were between 2 and 10 cases per 100,000 up till 1945. Hardly a “scourge.’ Language like yours Orac shows you are not credible.

    U.S. population in 1940 was 132,164,569. At a rate of 2/100,000, that would mean there would have been about 2,643 cases of polio. That’s the low end. The actual number of reported cases for 1940 was 9,804.

    Apparently, then, Sid’s acceptable threshold for injury from polio is somewhere above 10,000 cases in a year.

  35. #35 Todd W.
    April 19, 2012

    Sorry, meant to include the link for that 9,804 figure. It’s found here.

  36. #36 Science Mom
    April 19, 2012

    Excellent reply, Science Mom.

    It is isn’t it?

    Your grasp of the issue is unmatched.

    Actually it isn’t Robert; I have the sense and humility to understand that there are those in my field who have superior knowledge and experience and I choose to learn from them. You on the other hand are arrogantly ignorant and refuse to accept your severe limitations.

  37. #37 Rebecca
    April 19, 2012

    I was living in Israel in 1988 when there was a small polio outbreak. It was quite a shock for me, coming from the US, because I assumed everyone had been vaccinated against polio.

    An article from the LA Times (October 8, 1988) reports on the outbreak:

    JERUSALEM — Health officials in Israel ordered the immunization of all citizens up to age 40 to stem an outbreak of polio, which had been thought to be under control in the country.

    Eight Israelis are known to have been stricken with polio in the past two months. The last case was reported Oct. 1, when an 8-year-old boy fell ill in the coastal town of Hadera, where the virus has been found in the sewage system.

    Health officials responded to the Hadera outbreak by immunizing residents in and around the town and in a few other places. But a recent discovery of the virus in sewers, in widely separate parts of the country, convinced the government of the need for nationwide inoculation. The program begins today in the towns of Acre and Rehovot.

    The government will use a combination of two vaccines in an effort to obtain 100% immunity in the population.

    A separate program is planned for the Arab West Bank and Gaza Strip occupied by Israel.

    Although no known case of polio has affected a person over age 32, people up to 40 will be immunized as a special precaution…

    As in most developed countries, polio has been rare in Israel in recent years, and its reappearance led to accusations that the government had been lax in terms of public health.

    Physician Haim Gerichter told a newspaper, The Nation, that health officials had failed to administer booster vaccine to children immunized in infancy….

    There are indications that health officials ignored a warning of a possible epidemic when five Arabs contracted polio earlier this year. According to a report in the Jerusalem Post, these cases were found in the towns of Rahat and Kafr Kasim and in the Gaza Strip, which is occupied by the Israeli military.

    “We had signs,” the Post quoted Israeli physician Yossi Manor as saying. “We thought they were just sporadic cases.”

    Manor denied assertions that the outbreak was ignored because of racial discrimination.

    Until Thursday, the government had insisted that nationwide inoculation was unnecessary.

    Starting late last month, the government immunized members of the armed forces and increased chlorination of drinking water.

    The government originally thought that it would be sufficient to immunize only members of the armed forces (a very sizable percentage of the Israeli population serves in the military after high school), but then it became clear that people considerably older than conscription age had contracted polio. It was very scary – I’m too young to remember the polio epidemics in the US in the 1950s personally (I was born in 1956), but I remember hearing about iron lungs and people who were paralyzed because of polio. When immunizations were made available to the entire population, I went immediately to the local hospital and got my booster inoculation – a couple of drops onto my tongue. So, yes, polio outbreaks can still occur, even when most people are vaccinated against it. I remember that the theory was that someone had brought the illness back from Egypt (where it was endemic) and infected others in Israel that way.

  38. #38 IreneF
    April 19, 2012

    I well remember the measles outbreak in 1989-90, because I was pregnant, had never had measles, and my older child attended a pre-school with a high percentage of immigrant families. When I was a child, measles was just another childhood disease, like chicken pox or mumps–both of which I suffered through. I got rubella in college.

    I later asked my doctor to check my measles status, and it turns out I must have had a sub-clinical case because he said I was immune. But I wonder how many people are out there who were too old to be routinely vaccinated yet grew to adulthood without experiencing those diseases?

    And now I am immune suppressed. I suppose it’s a good thing I generally don’t feel well enough to leave the house and expose myself to the children of anti-vaxers.

  39. #39 Ben
    April 19, 2012

    ‘Given most people’s lack of personal experience with the diseases we vaccinate against, it’s actually rather amazing how well vaccination rates have held up in light of how easily complacency sets in again. We apparently have done pretty well combatting the effects of inertia and complacency when it comes to vaccines,…..’

    I suspect it is now inertia keeping people getting vaccinated.

  40. #40 Composer99
    April 19, 2012

    Sid says polio was:

    Hardly a “scourge.[“]

    I suppose Sid is onto something: this is a scourge (or should I say, The Scourge).

  41. #41 JGC
    April 19, 2012

    And why a big outbreak in 1916 then decades of relative quiescence until a major increase after WWII.

    Nice use of that term ‘relative’ there, sid. The actual fact, however, is that from 1916 until the development of effective vacccines there a regional polio epidemic occurred somewhere in the US every summer (PMID 16741562)

  42. #42 Sid Offit
    April 19, 2012

    Todd, did I say the 2 per 100k cases were IN 1940??? And the issue is not acceptability it is whether on not polio was a “scourge” at that time. Sad to see no defenders of the cleanliness theory come forward. : (

  43. #43 Narad
    April 19, 2012

    Excellent reply, Science Mom. Your grasp of the issue is unmatched.

    High irony, Sid. The mere presentation of your “question” demonstrates that you know the answer and are merely pathetically fishing for an avenue of attention.

  44. #44 lilady
    April 19, 2012

    Here’s another article about the mid-20th-century large outbreak of polio in the United States:

    http://kidshealth.org/parent/infections/bacterial_viral/polio.html

    My childhood chum was one of the 3,000 deaths that occurred during this outbreak.

    Here’s another article about the multi-year outbreaks of polio that occurred in the United during the 20th century:

    http://www.teachspace.org/personal/research/poliostory/fear.html

    Does Offal have his knickers in a knot, because I linked to the VFC program which purchases and distributes all the Recommended Childhood vaccines to VFC providers…paid for with public tax dollars?

  45. #45 Todd W.
    April 19, 2012

    @Sid

    Apparently, hypotheticals are lost on you. I used your 2 per 100K figure as an example to show that it actually amounts to quite a few people. Then I compared it to the actual number of cases to show that it was even higher. From 1937 to 1950, there were only two years that came close to the lower 2 per 100K figure. Most years were much higher, with rates actually increasing overall up to the 1950s. And that is only the reported cases, so they are likely a bit lower than actual incidence.

    So, yeah, I’d say it was a scourge, considering the costs associated with both immediate and long-term treatment, which we as a society are still dealing with.

  46. #46 Lawrence
    April 19, 2012

    “Head in the Sand” Robert uses 20/20 hindsight to say “polio – not that bad.” While historical records, including newspapers and other media of the time, including personal accounts, keep talking about the “perils of polio,” “the Scourge of Polio,” etc, etc, etc.

    Regardless of what dear Robert may think today, the people of the time seemed to think Polio was a big deal – quite big in fact.

  47. #47 Sid Offit
    April 19, 2012

    Glad to see “antivaxxers’ not the only ones clinging to untenable theories. I guess human nature is the same all over.

  48. #48 lilady
    April 19, 2012

    The “Canary Party” had live audio feeds to the Sacramento hearings on California Law AB 2109:

    http://canaryparty.net/

    How many libertarians and Tea Baggers have plugged into the nonsense *politics* of *free choice* and *Bad Big Pharma* which is the supposed agenda of the Canary Party?

    Look at the *founder* and the *Executive Director* of the Canary Party. It’s teh evil vaccines, folks!

    http://canaryparty.net/index.php/who-we-are

  49. #49 Sid Offit
    April 19, 2012

    @tea-baglady, I’m sure you know all about tea-bagging.

  50. #50 Anton P. Nym
    April 19, 2012

    Elvis is alive somewhere?

    Certainly not; he died alongside JFK a few years back in a Texas nursing home, saving the world from a vampiric cowboy mummy. I saw it on the TV.

    — Steve

  51. #51 lilady
    April 19, 2012

    Offal…why don’t you explain what “tea-bagging” is?

    (At least you have one mote of information to impart…because all your prior posts on this thread…are ridiculous.)

  52. #52 Agashem
    April 19, 2012

    I will give Offal credit only for not saying that AFP is the ‘new polio’. Other than that, no credibility.

  53. #53 anon
    April 19, 2012

    “In the case of OPV, an average of eight to nine adults contracted paralytic polio from contact with a recently immunized child each year. As the risk of catching polio in the Western Hemisphere diminished, the risk of contact infection with the attenuated polio virus outweighed the advantages of OPV, leading the CDC to recommend its discontinuation.
    National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (6 April 2007). “Polio Vaccine Questions & Answers”. Vaccines & Immunizations. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

  54. #54 Antaeus Feldspar
    April 19, 2012
    The unspeakable issue at the root of Pan’s bill is the influx of children from other countries into California’s public schools, who bring with them new strains of measles, mumps, chicken pox and flu bugs, among other communicable diseases. Children who have recently traveled out of the country also bring home infectious diseases.

    I think what the author is raving about is that California’s recent pertussis outbreak was had a greater morbidity and mortality in the Hispanic population. Of course, being Hispanic is not the same as “being from another country”.

    The ironic thing is that even though the author clearly means it in a racist, xenophobic way (her description of it as “politically incorrect” to acknowledge the “unspeakable issue” leaves little room for doubt that she’s dog-whistling) she is actually making some good points as to why vaccination should be regarded as a civic duty, not a parental “choice”: because new strains of disease do come in from all over the world. I don’t understand how a person with a functioning brainstem can write as if finding someone to blame for the presence of a public health threat (not that I think her identification is correct!) translates to “therefore, we shouldn’t have to do our part to protect against this threat.”

  55. #55 MI Dawn
    April 19, 2012

    @anon: and your point is? Now that polio IS controlled within the US and Canada, we can and have switched to the IPV. It’s not quite as protective, but then, the risk of an American or Canadian being exposed to polio within our borders is quite low. But if you were going to someplace where polio is endemic, I would bet you would be in line for the OPV!

  56. #56 IreneF
    April 19, 2012

    Anon–

    Is the CDC now recommending killed polio vaccine?

  57. #57 anon
    April 19, 2012

    @Liz Ditz-
    “This first detailed analysis of a recent North American pertussis outbreak found widespread disease among fully vaccinated older children. Starting approximately three years after prior vaccine dose, attack rates markedly increased, suggesting inadequate protection or durability from the acellular vaccine.” cid.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2012/03/13/cid.cis287

  58. #58 sheepmilker
    April 19, 2012

    Hmmm, could “anon” really be Thingy? Given the obsession with OPV, I bet it is.

  59. #59 Orac
    April 19, 2012

    I don’t think “anon” is Thingy based on IP addresses, although she could be spoofing.

  60. #60 Chris
    April 19, 2012

    Mr. Schecter:

    CDC is incorrect. There were ~136 deaths, not “hundreds.”

    You were never any good at numbers. From Acute measles mortality in the United States, 1987-2002.:

    We estimated that 259 measles deaths actually occurred; the reporting efficiencies were 64% for the NCHS and 71% for the NIP.

    So exactly how many deaths are needed before you think it is a problem? Three hundred? A thousand? Several thousands?

  61. #61 anon
    April 19, 2012

    Just reminding everyone who posted about receiving the OPV on the sugar cube, including me, were lucky!
    From the CDC
    http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vpd-vac/polio/vac-faqs.htm

  62. #62 llilady
    April 19, 2012

    “anon” has the whiff of another recent poster here. This other troll posted that same article last night on an older thread…using a sock puppet…”Paul Katz”:

    http://cid.oxfordjournals.org/content/early/2012/03/13/cid.cis287

    The author of this article is Paul H. Katz, MD, MPH who works for Kaiser Permanante, San Ramon, California. Kaiser Permanante-San Rafael is a reporting member of the Vaccine Safety DataLink…which enters into the Vaccine Safety Datalink database all vaccinations, all side effects and/or serious adverse events…as well as cases of vaccine-preventable-diseases:

    http://www.cdc.gov/vaccinesafety/Activities/VSD.html

    @ anon: D’oh…There is a newly licensed Dtap vaccine, which is a booster shot and required for entry into 7th grade, per California State Law. Its efficaciousness is being closely monitored by the Vaccine Safety Datalink…in next to “real time”…to determine if the recommendations for the new Dtap vaccine provide a high level of immunity, if given ~ 10 years after the DTaP infant primary series. (Epidemiology 101)

  63. #63 Science Mom
    April 19, 2012

    anon’s posting style is more like grandma lurker’s.

    Glad to see “antivaxxers’ not the only ones clinging to untenable theories. I guess human nature is the same all over.

    And what “untenable theories” would that be Robert? Are you also distancing yourself from the AoA crowd you so desperately cosy up to? If you are trying to present yourself now as a paragon of unbiased virtue and scepticism, pardon me while I catch my breath from laughing so hard.

  64. #64 Lawrence
    April 19, 2012

    @Science Mom – I was thinking that we should copy and paste that quote for use in the future, since he is admitting that ‘antivaxxers’ are clinging to untenable theories.

    I would love to hear Robert’s thoughts on both sides – which theories he considers “untenable.”

  65. #65 lilady
    April 19, 2012

    @ Science Mom:

    You ask what “untenable theories” Offal was referring to:

    (Offal’s post # 29)

    “And could someone help me understand how polio was caused by improved hygenic conditions yet, according to the WHO, the disease afflicted third world countries such as India, China and those of Africa as much as the USA.

    And why a big outbreak in 1916 then decades of relative quiescence until a major increase after WWII. Did it get clean, then dirty, then clean again?”

    -Repeat after me Offal…germ theory, germ theory, germ theory and….

  66. #66 Candy
    April 19, 2012

    I remember drinking the sweet polio vaccine from a little bottle shaped like a man with a yellow hat, which was the lid. I remember that bottle clearly because I was allowed to take it home and it was in with my toys for years. This was in Southeast Iowa in the early 60s.

    My best friend’s older brother was in a leg brace from polio. As for vaccines, I got all that were available because my mom and grandma both remembered well the seriousness of those diseases. I wish they’d had the measles vaccine then; I had the measles and still remember being deathly ill. Ditto chicken pox. I had a horrible case as a teen and wished I’d die. Pure misery. People who would willingly subject their kids to that are child abusers.

  67. #67 Gary
    April 19, 2012

    I remember those days. I was in the first generation of children vaccinated when the Salk vaccine became widely available. We lined up in long lines to get it. I also remember the March of Dimes raising money to fight polio — tape was put down on public sidewalks, and people would put the dimes from their change on the tape. Imagine trying to raise money that way today!

  68. #68 Gary
    April 19, 2012

    There is a discussion of the relationship between sanitation and polio in Jeffrey Kluger’s book: Splendid Solution — Jonas Salk and the Conquest of Polio. He also reports that the multi-shot syringes (six dosrs) were issued with an individual needle for each injection. Multi-dose syringes were used as a cost saving measure because they were reusable syringes which would normally be sterilized and reused. The disposable syringes originally planned were found to be defective.

  69. #69 Th1Th2
    April 19, 2012

    I don’t think “anon” is Thingy based on IP addresses, although she could be spoofing.

    Don’t be so stupid Orac. I’m on a different level. This thread won’t last a day and you know that coward.

    Now man up!

  70. #70 Gary
    April 19, 2012

    By the way, lilady, sanitation is only one factor among several affecting incidence. When there are multiple factors, you cannot expect a simple correlation for any one factor.

  71. #71 Composer99
    April 19, 2012

    Gary:

    It doesn’t look like they are engaged in taping sidewalks for people to put change on, but March of Dimes Canada is still active, although with polio out of the picture they have shifted focus to serving people with disabilities in general.

    Not sure if the US organization remains in operation or not.

  72. #72 Th2Th3
    April 19, 2012

    This discussion has inspired me to a newrealization about the connection between vaccines and autism, and it’s shocking. Wakefield was on the right track. Don’t get me wrong–his paper was travesty. It’s a travesty of a mockery of a sham of a mockery of a travesty of two mockeries of a sham, but he was on the right track….in the wrong direction and with the wrong vaccine, but the right track. He asked what happens after kids get MMR, and he was able to create data that suggested it was autism. But what he should have asked is what happens after kids get OPV. Answer: they don’t get autism. And what’s happened in the US since OPV was discontinued? Autism has risen exponentially. So we bring back OPV. None of you people eating pink sugar cubes have autism, right? Okay so I know I need an theory to explain it, so I’ll say that enteroviruses in general are autismogenic( a word, right?), and OPV primes the enteric immune system to respond to other enteroviruses like coxsackie in such a way that those infections are unable to trigger the g-protein mediated epigenetic inflammatory cascade (am I leaving out any buzzwords, here?) so the gut doesn’t get leaky and the child remains neurotypical. Wouldn’t you trade a 1 in 2.4 million/dose chance of paralytic polio to prevent a 1 in 3 chance of autism ( I’m mentally extrapolating, I haven’t read the news since it was 1 in 87, but I’m sure it continues to rise, and was probably 1 in 15 at the start of this post.)? Jenny McCarthy would. So would I.

  73. #73 Composer99
    April 19, 2012

    Simply brilliant, Th2Th3. Well done.

  74. #74 Denice Walter
    April 19, 2012

    @ Th2Th3:

    You left out *cytokines*.
    While you have created a near-perfect example of anti-vaccine rhetoric, there is always room for improvement; with that in mind, I suggest:

    you need more metaphors that instill a feeling of…
    foreboding, like ‘Vaccines’ Dark Inferno’ ( Gary Null)

    intelligent people can nearly follow you: so please render your line of reasoning more in-decipherable

    OPV is a product of the entrenched Pharmatocracy: Verboten! You need another product as ‘primer'( perhaps goat transfer factor)

    AJW is virtually a saint: don’t diss the saint, you’ll lose key portions of your targetted audience

    You haven’t hurled enough vitriol at SBM : I’m waiting!

    “Autismogenic” is good but needs a hyphen ( -genic); also you can progress to ‘autismo-genesis’
    ‘No paragraphs’ is a step in the right direction.
    Read more Age of Autism and Thinking Moms’ Revolution.
    You will thank me profusely.

    Otherwise, I say an 8 of a possible 10.

  75. #75 Th2Th3
    April 19, 2012

    @Denise Walters
    That made me giggle. The “no paragraphs” style is not an affectation, it’s a byproduct of climbing into the “rant” space of my cerebral cortex. No paragraphs is just a happy accident.

  76. #76 Candy
    April 19, 2012

    http://www.marchofdimes.com/

    March of Dimes seems to still be going strong. I remember my grandma going door to door for them, and for muscular dystrophy, and The American Cancer Society. We kids did the door knocking for UNICEF on Halloween. Door knocking is pretty much a thing of the past, save for Mormons and Witnesses.

  77. #77 Candy
    April 19, 2012

    From the March of Dimes site:

    “Research update:
    CMV vaccine on the horizon

    “The cytomegalovirus (CMV) causes birth defects in 8,000 babies each year. Moms can pass the virus on to their baby before or during birth. The March of Dimes is funding the development of a vaccine that can prevent the infection in women of childbearing age, protecting babies.”

  78. #78 Liz Ditz
    April 19, 2012

    Depressing vaccine-related news: In July and August, American Airlines will be airing an interview with vaccine ignoramus Meryl Dorey of the Australian Vaccine Network.

    Click on my name for the press release.

    This interview will cover the following issues:
    the recent world-wide epidemic of whooping cough despite continuing high levels of vaccination;
    the meteoric rise in autism from 1 child in 10,000 only 20 years ago to 1 in 88 today with vaccinations being implicated as one of the causes; and
    what steps parents can take to become fully informed about this issue before having their children vaccinated.
    “Over 8.4 million people on 58,000 flights will be able to hear this interview which is being aired on American Airlines’ “Executive Report”,” says Meryl Dorey. “It will also be published in the Airlines’ American Way in-flight magazine over this period.

    I hope we can get them to change their minds.

  79. #80 tjcoop3
    April 19, 2012

    @Th2Th3
    It’s really interesting that you claim that Wakefeild’s paper was such a travesty since the British medical journal that published the article condemning him which in turn led to his loss of medical privileges in Great Britain has since publicly apologized and retracted that article. They have also said that they now believe that much of Wakefeild’s conclusions merit further research and that it appears that there may INDEED be some link between MMR vaccines and autism.
    All the research is not in. They threw Tesla out and ruined Royal Raymond Rife and yet recently I read some graduate upstarts paper of some fantastic discovery he had made that using different occillating frequencies he could destroy certain viruses.
    One problem Rife discovered this in the 1930s used it to demonstrate successfully that he could eradicate cancer tumors with several hundred people and the AMA ruined him. Why-too much money in other “treatments” that BTW still do not cure.
    It’s about money folks these people could care less about you or your children they make billions off of vaccines period. Whether they work or not is realy irrelevant. Some do some…not so much who cares as long as the bucks and the vacations in the Bahamas for the top sales people keep rolling in. Why do you think that the same Doctors who work for the Pharma companies used to work at FDA and CDC.. DUH payback! jeshhh when will people wake up. Call me a troll I don’t care check the facts. Not what the government tells you. If their mouth is moving they are lying. Google syphilis experiments on black males. They’er still doin’ to us all except now they call it vaccines.

  80. #81 Mark M
    April 19, 2012

    Th2Th3?

    You sound like someone I once knew. Really smart, could convince anyone that all medical science is wrong. Used to blow this lot away with pages of unconventional genius. Breathtaking stuff.

    Worked in a hospital, too…

    :D

  81. #82 Science Mom
    April 19, 2012

    It’s really interesting that you claim that Wakefeild’s paper was such a travesty since the British medical journal that published the article condemning him which in turn led to his loss of medical privileges in Great Britain has since publicly apologized and retracted that article. They have also said that they now believe that much of Wakefeild’s conclusions merit further research and that it appears that there may INDEED be some link between MMR vaccines and autism.

    What planet do you reside on? Nothing of the kind has happened on this one.

  82. #83 novalox
    April 19, 2012

    @tjcoop3

    Citation please for your unfounded assertions, please.

  83. #84 lilady
    April 19, 2012

    Oh Cripes, I go offline, come back…and find you guys have landed a certifiable loon.

    When did the BMJ retract their investigative articles on Andrew Wakefield…and issue an apology?

  84. #85 Denice Walter
    April 19, 2012

    @ lilady:

    I think either tjcoop3 is a Poe, Th2TH3 f#@king with us or a true blue follower of PRN:
    AJW, Tesla and Rife mentioned in nearly the same breath has got to be some kind of a record.
    I stand in awe.

  85. #86 Tatiana
    April 19, 2012

    Somewhat unrelated, but thought you might find it interesting that Coursera/University of Pennsylvania are offering an online course in vaccines, taught by Paul Offit. https://www.coursera.org/course/vaccines

  86. #87 Marc Stephens Is Insane
    April 19, 2012

    Defintely not a Poe. If you Google his/her user name you’ll find a blog and a YouTube channel with references to all the usual cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs offenders: Natural News, Alex Jones, etc.

    Here’s the Google results page:
    https://www.google.ca/search?hl=en&output=search&sclient=psy-ab&q=tjcoop3&oq=tjcoop3&aq=f&aqi=&aql=&gs_nf=1&gs_l=hp.3…243.2662.1.2899.7.7.0.0.0.0.220.1122.1j4j2.7.0.YLqZJpynxwA&psj=1&cad=b&cad=cbv&sei=1MyQT636GIHd6QHPwvG6BA

    Careful…woo ahead…

  87. #88 lilady
    April 19, 2012

    @ Gary: I located this article on disposable glass syringes that were patented 1949-1950 and, which according to this article, were used extensively during the early days of immunizing against polio, with the Salk IPV.

    http://inventors.about.com/library/inventors/blsyringe.htm

    If the Salk vaccine was packaged in multidose vials, you would need a sterile disposable (or sterilized reusable) needle and syringe, as it is necessary to draw air into the syringe barrel, inject the air into a multidose vial (to break the vacuum within the vial), to be able to withdraw a measured dose of vaccine.

  88. #89 Th2Th3
    April 19, 2012

    I hate to break character, but my trolling is straightforward, and I would never defend Wakefield, even in jest. I’m just amazed how quickly the Wakeheads respond. If it’s Poe, I concede to your mastery, game, set, and match.

  89. #90 RtContracting
    April 19, 2012

    My great grandfather had a route delivering mail in a rural area when he contracted polio in the early 1950’s. He died shortly after getting I’ll, causing a bit of a panic in the community. Pretty much everyone in the community had some contact with the mail.

    The whole family was quarantined and my great uncle ended up spending 6 months recovering from polio in a distant hospital. My great grandmother was left as a widow to raise 4 small kids.

    My grandmother recently retold the story to me – she still has a tear in her eye when she tells how the family wasn’t allowed to attend the funeral because of the quarantine.

  90. #91 Gary
    April 19, 2012

    Lilady, I’m merely reporting what Kluger wrote about the early history of the Salk vaccine. He wrote that multidose syringes were used, not merely multidose vials, which supports the recollection of adelady, above. But she seems to imply that one needle was used for multiple injections. That is not what Kluger wrote, and I don’t believe it would have been done that way.

    It was a large program — I’m sure there would have been some variation in administration at different times and places.

  91. #92 lilady
    April 19, 2012

    “Perhaps the best example is Hib, which used to cause horrific disease in children as recently as the late 1980s and early 1990s. Then the Hib vaccine was introduced, and it’s not a major problem anymore. Indeed, many pediatricians trained since the mid-1990s have never seen a case.”

    http://www.cdc.gov/Features/HibDisease/

    I saw cases of invasive Hib disease, before the licensing of Hib vaccine and it is something that you cannot quite forget. Why do parents refuse this vaccine and other vaccines…based on the uninformed pseudoscience of notorious anti-vaccine groups?

  92. #93 tjcoop3
    April 20, 2012

    @Marc Stephens
    Certainly not a Poe. Nevertheless, if you can ever pull yourself away from the inane and insane corporate media might I suggest at least one alternative site you might appreciate.
    TheDailyBell.com They are a group of intellectuals.
    I do not read only the likes of those sites you mention but Science, Theology, Medicine, alternative as well as the regular sort. I respect both. In fact I just got through having major surgery a few weeks ago which led to two MRSA infections and a week’s stay in ICU. I had no trouble at all receiving any of the care that they recommended for me.
    As to my statement that BMJ had come out with an apology I misspoke. I went back and reread the article that I had thought said that and I had read it wrong.
    I apologize to everyone here for having misstated the facts. Please forgive me.
    I still Like Tesla and Rife though. :)

  93. #94 Narad
    April 20, 2012

    Certainly not; he died alongside JFK a few years back in a Texas nursing home, saving the world from a vampiric cowboy mummy.

    I do fear for the sequel. The original is something of a solace.

  94. #95 lilady
    April 20, 2012

    @ Gary: I know of Jeffrey Kluger’s work, although I haven’t read “Splendid Solution”. Apparently, according to this reviewer, the book is full of inaccuracies:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1180561/

    My mom, who was also a registered nurse had a “collection” of glass syringes, none of which were multidose. She also had the reusable needles. I think the needles were removed from the syringes after an injection and the syringes were disassembled before sterilization. The syringe barrels, plungers and the needles were sterilized, then were reassembled. My mom also told me that when she worked in hospitals~1930s, the bevels of the reusable needles where sharpened on a whetstone (ouch!)…no wonder why injections hurt so much, back then.

  95. #96 lilady
    April 20, 2012

    “Certainly not a Poe. Nevertheless, if you can ever pull yourself away from the inane and insane corporate media might I suggest at least one alternative site you might appreciate.
    TheDailyBell.com They are a group of intellectuals.”

    Like this *intellectual* article?

    http://thedailybell.com/3809/Is-the-Vaccine-Industry-Beginning-to-Fail

    Speaking just for myself, I think I’ll continue to use the internet to visit other websites.

  96. #97 Marc Stephens Is Insane
    April 20, 2012

    Here’s some good “intellectual” reading too:

    http://thedailybell.com/3810/The-Illuminati-Strikes-Again-April-19th-and-20th-Are-Fraught

    There’s also another article there about how the polio vaccine doesn’t really work. I won’t link to avoid moderation jail.

    Just another crackpot Illuminati/central bank/ mainstream media conspiracy website.

  97. #98 adelady
    April 20, 2012

    My grandmother recently retold the story to me – she still has a tear in her eye when she tells how the family wasn’t allowed to attend the funeral because of the quarantine.

    These things live on in families in various ways. My father never explained why he always hrrmmphhed, snorted and sneered about French people being ‘dirty’. He was a taciturn man who never explained anything, I wouldn’t have dreeaamt of asking more. Turns out he and a couple of mates contracted polio during WW2 when they had the job of cleaning up the rubbish dump-latrine combo when they took over a camp from the Foreign Legion.

    The other two died and he had problems throughout the rest of the war – and later had to give up being a carpenter because he kept falling off scaffolding. Mum says she virtually had to hold him up when they were walking in the street after he got out of hospital. In his 70s and 80s he insisted that he had post-polio syndrome. (A handy let-out because he never accepted that he had CMT – although whenever he was in hospital all the younger residents were paraded through to look at his hands and feet because of the classic, textbook quality shapes. Me? I have a sneaking suspicion that the polio exacerbated the problems of muscle weakness in his legs even if they didn’t amount to the full-blown syndrome.)

  98. #99 Gary
    April 20, 2012

    lilady, I don’t understand your point. Are you disputing Kluger’s statement that syringes holding six doses were used, and abelady’s recollection that multidose syringes (I don’t belive 20) were used? On what basis? Are you asserting that one needle was used for multiple injections? Remember, this was an assembly line operation. I don’t believe they had an autoclave on site (at schools) to sterilize instruments as they were working. This would not have been as efficient as bringing enough needles for everyone to be vaccinated.

    My mother is also an R.N. (retired), and she was there (although not administering the shots). I’ll ask her what she remembers.

  99. #100 lilady
    April 20, 2012

    @ Gary: No, I’m not disputing what adelady stated…I merely question the use of multiple-dose syringes.

    “Are you asserting that one needle was used for multiple injections? Remember, this was an assembly line operation. I don’t believe they had an autoclave on site (at schools) to sterilize instruments as they were working.”

    Gary, go back and read what I stated. When single dose reuseable syringes and reusable needles were used for injections…of course they were sterilized between uses.

    Also ask your mother how to withdraw the measured dose of vaccine from a multidose vial. She will tell you that you must inject air into the vial…to break the vaccuum…in order to withdraw the exact dose of vaccine. (If you merely change the needle, then contamination with blood-borne pathogens, can take place in the syringe, or in the multi-dose vial.)

    BTW, Gary why were there major outbreaks of polio in major cities even after purified water, indoor toilets and human waste sewers/treatment plants were in place?

    And Gary, why did polio strike down kids from the middle class and upper classes…who had all the benefits of modern sanitation systems in place?

  100. #101 tjcoop3
    April 20, 2012

    @lilady
    but did you read the article. If not that is the great difference between us. I read all sides and draw my own conclusions. I may strongly disagree with an author but I will often read what they have to say.
    I really think the only way we are ever going to start solving our problems in this nation is if we actually start listening to what others are saying and why
    The take away from that article for me is that the author believes that government along with the Pharma Industry would like to take the choice away from parents to decide what is best for their own children.
    Sorry but too many wars have already been fought for anyone to take away the right of Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness for me and mine to stop doing as we see fit.
    I have friends, yes friends, who actually wonder if in some cases government should intervene. We disagree, strongly, but we remain friends.
    I am at heart a voluntaryist but for a final time I will vote either write-in or on the ballot for Ron Paul.
    Either of the other two get in and we will see ourselves and our our children in perpetual wars and continual drafts of all our future children for at least another generation.
    Sorry for getting off topic. I won’t bug ya’ll anymore. It’s obvious I don’t belong here. Sorry.

  101. #102 Narad
    April 20, 2012

    Sorry but too many wars have already been fought for anyone to take away the right of Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness for me and mine to stop doing as we see fit.

    If you think wars have been fought so that you can “do as you see fit,” you’re not thinking very hard. Nonetheless, it’s hard for me to determine what exactly your complaint is, inasmuch as you seem to be advocating some sort of muddled libertarianism that oughtn’t to have a problem with PurÅ¿uing HappineÅ¿s in your own space or worrying about other people considering you a parasite on public health.

  102. #103 Kelly M Bray
    April 20, 2012

    Ron Paul…check.

  103. #104 lilady
    April 20, 2012

    “@lilady but did you read the article. If not that is the great difference between us. I read all sides and draw my own conclusions. I may strongly disagree with an author but I will often read what they have to say.”

    Of course I read the article…and it is based on conspiracy theories and not based on science.

    I’ve read some of the other articles at that website that you linked to, which BTW are also filled with conspiracy. Why would you be reading such garbage and why would you think that the posters here would be *impressed* with your *source*?

    “Call me a troll I don’t care check the facts.”

    Okay, you’re a troll…I’ve checked the *facts*.

  104. #105 lilady
    April 20, 2012

    Here’s another article from an *intellectual* at the Daily Bell:

    http://thedailybell.com/3687/VIDEO-Vaccines-Didnt-Cure-Polio-After-All

  105. #106 Marc Stephens Is Insane
    April 20, 2012

    This is the Daily Bell’s pop-up “definition” of vaccines:


    A vaccine is said to provide immunity from certain infections and diseases. In a sense a vaccine is homeopathic, as it uses a little bit of the disease itself to galvanize the body into producing antibodies against it. Once the body has produced these antibodies, they may be automatically reproduced to fight the disease or infection for many years.

    The term vaccine comes from Edward Jenner who discovered in the late 1700s the mechanism that vaccines apparently use. Jenner experimented with cow pox in order to develop an inoculation against small pox.

    Despite the many breakthroughs claimed for vaccines, they are increasingly controversial in the 21st century as children and adults are exposed to more and more of them. Giving children a number of vaccines before they are five or six years old is bound to strike some as excessive, especially when some are live-virus vaccines. That Western governments increasingly seek to mandate vaccines only aggravates the controversy.

    In fact, there is plenty of anecdotal evidence about the destructive nature of vaccines when they apparently collide with the wrong genetic or biological type. Opponents of this kind of apocryphal dialogue will point out that it means nothing without scientific rigor. And yet there seems much of it, especially on the Internet.

    Most children apparently can easily tolerate vaccines (for better or worse) but perhaps some cannot. There seems to be an ever-increasing amount of asthma, immune system related syndromes and other “chronic” conditions (in addition to autism) that modern Western medicine cannot easily explain. Vaccine opponents are convinced that the over-application of vaccines may have something to do with it.

    Why is there not more research into the potential damage that vaccines may cause? Critics argue that if vaccines are as safe as their makers proclaim, then they should welcome such research and pursue it themselves. That would silence the naysayers once and for all.

  106. #107 herr doktor bimler
    April 20, 2012

    I am at heart a voluntaryist but for a final time I will vote either write-in or on the ballot for Ron Paul.

    I must have skimmed over all the comments clamouring to learn about tjcoop3’s voting intentions.

  107. #108 Hyperion
    April 20, 2012

    If you crush them… the eggs… then there are too many…

    Did anyone see my plea for help at #20? I realise I posted it on wrong thread, should one move it to a more autism related thread or…

    20 “Trying to locate a paper which concluded something like:

    “X% of asperger’s who attempted or completed suicide were judged to be at no risk of suicide by their health professionals”

    X is shockingly high, memory fails me on the exact value. The study was a few years ago, this article reminded me:

    http://www.examiner.co.uk/news/local-west-yorkshire-news/2012/04/19/bullied-autistic-boy-killed-by-train-in-marsden-was-failed-by-health-and-social-agencies-say-coroner-86081-30795483/

    Posted by: Hyperion | April 19, 2012 2:26 PM ”

  108. #109 Rebecca
    April 20, 2012

    Hyperion – what does your comment have to do with a discussion of the polio vaccine?

  109. #110 Antaeus Feldspar
    April 20, 2012

    Critics argue that if vaccines are as safe as their makers proclaim, then they should welcome such research and pursue it themselves. That would silence the naysayers once and for all.

    These two sentences alone tell you how full of crap the Daily Dingdong is. The very first thing naysayers would and always have done if research was done that pointed to vaccines being safe is to allege that the results were tainted because of Big Pharma influence, even if such influence only exists in the minds of conspiranoids who think any government agency can automatically be assumed to be in bed with Big Pharma even if not one shred of evidence to support the allegation exists. (“It was supported by a grant from the CDC! That means it was bought by Big Pharma, because there’s no way the Centers for Disease Control would want actual unbiased research related to disease control!!”) On that basis alone, the idea that vaccine makers could themselves pursue vaccine safety research and it would silence the naysayers is absolute nonsense.

    Not to mention that naysayers are never silenced by facts and logic anyways. We could go on for hours listing the examples:

    “It’s absolutely certain that mercury in vaccines is causing an autism epidemic! Now that they’ve removed the thimerosal from almost all vaccines, we’ll see the autism rate plummet!”
    “… Okay, it’s been years now and no sign of a plummet. So do you admit your mercury-in-vaccines hypothesis is unlikely, now?”
    “Not at all! It’s actually mercury vapors from cremations in China that are crossing the Pacific Ocean and exactly making up the difference in the mercury that children used to get in their vaccines! Therefore, vaccines are still bad, even the ones that have never had mercury!”

    Or:

    “My own research, consisting of asking people in person and on the Internet, has never turned up a case of an unvaccinated person who has an ASD! Therefore, vaccines are obviously the cause of ASDs!”
    “What about X? What about Y? What about Z? That is, what about all those people who spoke up the last time you made this claim about never encountering an unvaccinated autistic person and said ‘Here I am’?”
    “Well, they don’t count. I told them I’d count them if they delivered to me all their medical records for me to examine and if I, a person with no medical training whatsoever, satisfied myself through a copious examination of those records that they were indeed ‘unvaccinated’ to my satisfaction, including guarantees that they had not actually been secretly vaccinated at any point. Since no one wants to turn over their medical records to me, they don’t exist!”

    Or:
    “Well, you went on record as being *sure* that your first two kids were autistic because they got vaccinated. But because you were so positive, you made sure your third child didn’t get an vaccinations, and he still turned out autistic. Doesn’t that suggest that maybe vaccinations had nothing to do with it after all?”
    “Of course not! What it really means is that it was the vaccinations *I* got decades ago that caused the autism in my children! There’s no other logical explanation!”

  110. #111 Hyperion
    April 20, 2012

    Rebecca, I’ve done gone did put it on the wrong thread, must I move it to the most recent autism related post for it to be appropriate, can you just humour me please? Give an aspie a break, it’s autism awareness month!

    Did you really hate my question that much?

  111. #112 trrll
    April 20, 2012

    My father was a doctor, so you can bet we were first in line for the OPV, and for every other vaccination–just like every other doctor’s kid I’ve ever known.

  112. #113 Marc Stephens Is Insane
    April 20, 2012

    Antaeus,

    I read something on some woo site last night claiming the next big “revelation” that will be covered up by Big Sugar is that autism is caused by…wait for it…high fructose corn syrup.

    Is this a new crackpot theory or has it been around for a while?

    My one question: is the corn syrup being injected with the vaccines? :-)

  113. #114 Composer99
    April 20, 2012

    lilady, IMO these two paragraphs are out of line, considering you and Gary are simply disagreeing on some historical details of polio vaccination:

    BTW, Gary why were there major outbreaks of polio in major cities even after purified water, indoor toilets and human waste sewers/treatment plants were in place?

    And Gary, why did polio strike down kids from the middle class and upper classes…who had all the benefits of modern sanitation systems in place?

    Gary has not made any claims on this thread indicating anti-vax sentiments and indeed wrote with admiration of the efforts of the March of Dimes to combat polio.

  114. #115 Denice Walter
    April 20, 2012

    @ 85, I attempted to draw out tj so I feel rather pleased with myself.

    Whether we’re discussing Alex Jones, the Bell, PRN**, Natural News – the same stories go around and around.
    They display certain political proclivities ( libertarianism, anti-corporatism- except for the proprietors’ companies) and the ‘natural is better theme’ ad nauseum. So of course, they abhor pharmaceuticals and processed food ( “Sugar: Sweet Suicide” @ PRN): vaccines seem to be universally despised.

    Since about 2008, the ones I survey have become even more political and prognosicate on economic solutions which would agree with libertarians and sometimes the far right.
    Unfortunately, facebook enables them to get free advertising through their own customer/ fan base.

    ** not the real one

  115. #116 Prometheus
    April 20, 2012

    “Sid Offit” (#29):

    “Polio a scourge in the 20’s, 30s and 40s? Not really. There were between 2 and 10 cases per 100,000 up till 1945. Hardly a ‘scourge.'”

    The figure of “2-10 per 10,000″ is based on the overall US population; since polio didn’t strike everywhere in equla proportion, these numbers can be rather misleading.

    Up until 1950’s, nearly half of the US population was rural, with census figures showing 43.5% rural in 1940 and 36.0% rural in 1950. This is important because polio was a much bigger problem in urban settings, where large numbers of people are in contact, than it is in a rural environments. My father, who grew up in a mid-sized city in the 1930’s to 1950’s, vividly recalled annual polio outbreaks and several classmates stricken or killed by polio. My mother, who grew up on a farm in a particularly rural county, cannot recall a single case among her school mates.

    Of course, we now know that the reason for this is that paralytic polio infections are most common in situation where sanitation is good enough to keep most people from being exposed to the virus in infancy (but not so good that they are never exposed) and where large numbers of people are in close contact (polio virus spreads by the fecal-oral route).

    The “2-10 per 10,000″ figure is merely the “tip of the iceberg” and represents only those who had a recognisable clinical sydrome consistent with polio. There were undoubtedly many more people with subclinical and inapparent infections.

    “Sid Offit” and others of his ilk may like to kid themselves that polio was never much of a problem – let alone a “scourge” – but that flies in the face of what people were writing and saying in the decades preceding the development of the polio vaccine.

    For me, the best illustration of this is that my father – who was never very involved in the day-to-day issues of child care – insisted that his children get the injected (Salk) polio vaccine, even though our paediatrician wanted to wait until the oral (Sabin) vaccine was released (in 1961), since our (semi-rural) community hadn’t seen a case of polio for over ten years.

    Prometheus

  116. #117 Chris
    April 20, 2012

    Hyperion:

    Did you really hate my question that much?

    Can you accept that no one really knows the answer to your off topic question? It is not a matter of hate, but not particularly interested in doing research for you.

  117. #118 dandover
    April 20, 2012

    @Shay

    Born in 1955 — you’re preaching to the converted. … I almost– almost — comprehend why a young parent today might not realize the need for vaccinations, but where are the grandparents? Why is my generation not out thumping these kids upside the head?

    Born in 1976. I’m constantly battling anti-vaxx misinformation from within my extended family. It takes an incredible amount of effort to stay on top of it. Many hours I’ve spent undoing the damage that had been done and convincing my wife that vaccinating our baby girl is the right thing to do. The source of most of my misery? My mother-in-law who was born in 1949 and her mother who is now 80-something.

    While it is acceptable for elders to thump the heads of their children, the reverse is more socially frowned upon. So we youngsters have to find creative ways to be more tactful. It’s not easy.

  118. #119 Gary
    April 20, 2012

    Composer99, thanks for the support. I don’t know why lilady is being so argumentative on these details.

    Regarding loading a syringe from a multidose vial: it was loaded into a multidose syringe (according to Kluger). Loading a six-dose syringe from a six-dose vial is exactly the same as loading a single-dose syringe from a single-dose vial. The difference is in administering the injections. The needle must be changed between each shot, and there must be no back wash. This procedure was temporary in any case. My second and third vaccinations were administered in the usual way, in our doctor’s office with a single-dose syringe.

    The sanitation issue is discussed by Kluger, as I mentioned. It was thought that unsanitary conditions in underdeveloped societies exposed the general population to small doses of the virus, which caused immunity to develop in those infected. When enclosed sewers came into use, most people were not exposed to the virus, hence had no immunity. When an outbreak occurred, it would be transmitted to others more readily because of this. It’s not me theory — I’m just reporting what I read. It doesn’t matter today because we all want sewer systems and (except the loons) the vaccine.

  119. #120 Gary
    April 20, 2012

    Composer99, thanks for the support. I don’t know why lilady is being so argumentative on these details.

    Regarding loading a syringe from a multidose vial: it was loaded into a multidose syringe (according to Kluger). Loading a six-dose syringe from a six-dose vial is exactly the same as loading a single-dose syringe from a single-dose vial. The difference is in administering the injections. The needle must be changed between each shot, and there must be no back wash. This procedure was temporary in any case. My second and third vaccinations were administered in the usual way, in our doctor’s office with a single-dose syringe.

    The sanitation issue is discussed by Kluger, as I mentioned. It was thought that unsanitary conditions in underdeveloped societies exposed the general population to small doses of the virus, which caused immunity to develop in those infected. When enclosed sewers came into use, most people were not exposed to the virus, hence had no immunity. When an outbreak occurred, it would be transmitted to others more readily because of this. It’s not me theory — I’m just reporting what I read. It doesn’t matter today because we all want sewer systems and (except the loons) the vaccine.

  120. #121 Vicki
    April 20, 2012

    With regard to Shay’s question “Where are the grandparents?” in some cases it might need to be the great-grandparents (who, even if healthy, may not be as involved).

    I was born during the Kennedy administration, which means that I am old enough that I could be a grandmother*, without anyone having complained about “teen mothers” or the like, but young enough not to remember polio. I had all the then-available childhood vaccines, and the only childhood disease I remember having was chicken pox.

    *I’m not, nor even a mother; but it’s not odd to have a first child in one’s early 20s.

  121. #122 lilady
    April 20, 2012

    @ Composer99: If you have been following the discussions thus far, my first comment, directed at Sid Offit at #31

    “3-2-1 Waiting for Offal to argue, once again, that large polio outbreaks were not seen in urban areas…after sanitation had improved.

    I grew up in Brooklyn and guess what?…We had “city” water and “city” waste sewers. We even had an indoor bathroom :-)”

    Gary first posted at me at # 70:

    “By the way, lilady, sanitation is only one factor among several affecting incidence. When there are multiple factors, you cannot expect a simple correlation for any one factor.”

    Perhaps, I should have directly replied to Gary at that time…but I didn’t.

    So, I posed those two questions to him on a later post:

    BTW, Gary why were there major outbreaks of polio in major cities even after purified water, indoor toilets and human waste sewers/treatment plants were in place?

    And Gary, why did polio strike down kids from the middle class and upper classes…who had all the benefits of modern sanitation systems in place?

    All I really expected from him was an acknowledgment that polio virus is spread primarily via the fecal-route…which is dependent on good personal hygiene practices. During the last major polio outbreak 1951-1952…and during prior outbreaks in major cities with indoor plumbing, “city” pure water and “city” human waste/waste management systems in place, public wading and swimming pools were closed because of the risk of polio transmission via the fecal-oral route.

  122. #123 Hyperion
    April 20, 2012

    I’m all out of guesses on which keywords to find it with.

    Never mind, the moment’s gone. I don’t care about asperger suicide today.

  123. #124 delurked lurker
    April 20, 2012

    Wow we have an intelecksual troll and jeepers he put up an intelecksual website so that we too can be intelecksual just like him

    Priceless :)

  124. #125 lilady
    April 20, 2012

    @ Gary: I have no wish to continue a contentious dialogue with you about multiple dose syringes being used during early polio vaccine administrations. I have searched for any references to a multiple dose syringe being used during the trials and/or during the the early days of mass immunization of children against polio during the mid/late 1950s. The only references I have located are pictures of multi-dose VIALS used during that time and articles about the contract between Becton-Dickinson and Dr. Salk to develop and provide 1.8 million disposable glass syringes, that were used during the Summer and Spring 1954, to immunize 1.8 million children in 44 states during the “field trial” for Dr. Salk’s polio vaccine:

    http://www.ahrn.net/library_upload/uploadfile/file2376.pdf

    “Regarding loading a syringe from a multidose vial: it was loaded into a multidose syringe (according to Kluger). Loading a six-dose syringe from a six-dose vial is exactly the same as loading a single-dose syringe from a single-dose vial. The difference is in administering the injections. The needle must be changed between each shot, and there must be no back wash. This procedure was temporary in any case. My second and third vaccinations were administered in the usual way, in our doctor’s office with a single-dose syringe.”

    No Gary, you are incorrect in your assumption that changing a needle on a syringe will protect a patient from blood-borne pathogens:

    http://www.ismp.org/newsletters/acutecare/articles/20101202.asp

  125. #126 Science Mom
    April 20, 2012

    I’m all out of guesses on which keywords to find it with.

    Never mind, the moment’s gone. I don’t care about asperger suicide today.

    Hyperion, what was your question. I have a free moment so I can do a literature search for you.

  126. #127 Gary
    April 20, 2012

    “No Gary, you are incorrect in your assumption that changing a needle on a syringe will protect a patient from blood-borne pathogens:”

    I assumed no such thing. I merely reported what Kluger wrote about the procedure. I’m not going to quote it here; readers interested in this minutia can find material on pages 249 and 307 of the paperback edition of Kluger’s book (Berkeley trade paperback edition, Feb. 2006). Please direct your objections to him.

    On more careful reading, however, it is not clear whether the reusable syringe held six doses or was filled six times, but a fresh needle was used for each recipient in either case. Please direct requests for clarification to Mr. Kluger, not to me.

    I did ask my mother, R.N. (retired) about the procedure. She told me that a multidose syringe would have been irregular, and she never heard of it. Multidose vials were not unusual, however. In those cases, one needle was used to extract the vaccine and left in the vial; a different needle was used to administer the shot. This was a general recollection, not necessarily applicable to the Salk vaccine. She did adminster Salk vaccine however, but not before 1957. There is a photograph of people lined up outside the clinic where she worked in her memoir (Where The Heart Is, Winchester Place Publishing, 2009). I suppose she gave me my booster shots; I was only eight in 1955 when the vaccine became widely available, and don’t remember any details of the original or subsequent vaccinations.

    My mother is, of course, the ultimate authority on nursing practice of the day. If anyone wishes to contradict her, we will just have to agree to disagree.

  127. #128 Hyperion
    April 21, 2012

    Hi Science Mom,

    The question was way back at #20:

    ‘ Trying to locate a paper which concluded something like:

    “X% of asperger’s who attempted or completed suicide were judged to be at no risk of suicide by their health professionals”

    X is shockingly high, memory fails me on the exact value. The study was a few years ago, this article reminded me:

    http://www.examiner.co.uk/news/local-west-yorkshire-news/2012/04/19/bullied-autistic-boy-killed-by-train-in-marsden-was-failed-by-health-and-social-agencies-say-coroner-86081-30795483/

    Ring any bells? Thank you.

  128. #129 Science Mom
    April 21, 2012

    Hyperion, I found this which might be it: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17555026 or references may be what you are looking for. There is no abstract so if you email me by going through my blog, I can send you the full text. Make sure you use your ‘nym from here.

  129. #130 Tyson F. Gautreaux
    May 30, 2012

    I’m still learning from you, but I’m trying to reach my goals. I absolutely enjoy reading all that is posted on your blog.Keep the posts coming. I liked it!

  130. […] pointed out before that pover the last couple of years I’ve become a bit of a fan of old time radio, having discovered Radio Classics on Sirius XM Radio. I don’t remember how I discovered it, but I […]

  131. It’s perfect time to make some plans for the future and it is time to be happy. I’ve read this post and if I could I want to suggest you some interesting things or suggestions. Maybe you can write next articles referring to this article. I want to read more things about it!

  132. #133 polionamechanger
    Switzerland
    June 20, 2012

    I am somewhat perplexed at the mythology here, Polio in India has just been renamed according to writers on the BMJ blog to non polio flaccid paralysis which is indistinguisible from polio and twice as deadly with more cases than actual polio after Bill and Melinda’s campaign, what the hell is this all about?

  133. #134 godisaliveandkicking
    June 20, 2012

    I thought as much, it amazes me that people like you are sucking that pharma cock so hard the fact that tens of thousands of kids in India who are now paralysed because of people like you concerns you not one jot.

    You are a thoroughly nasty piece of work and one day your involvement in this whole vaccine scam will be made public and you will be made accountable.

  134. #135 godisaliveandkicking
    June 20, 2012

    Oh the god reference is about you. Too quickly for your panel of scum to decide whether a post might just blight this religious blog.

  135. #136 AdamG
    June 20, 2012

    the fact that tens of thousands of kids in India who are now paralysed because of people like you

    Got any evidence for this “fact,” troll? Didn’t think so.

The site is currently under maintenance and will be back shortly. New comments have been disabled during this time, please check back soon.