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Why are antivaccinationists so at home with Libertarianism?

Rats.

Everyone’s blogging about all the studies showing (as if it needed to be shown yet again) that vitamin supplementation is not necessary for most people, nor does it decrease the risk of heart disease or cancer, and I can’t, at least not yet. Why not? Because my friggin’ university doesn’t subscribe to the Annals of Internal Medicine! I know! Can you believe it? And, you, my regular readers, know that I never blog a study (or three studies) without having the actual studies in front of me. Abstracts alone, as I’ve shown time and time again, can be deceiving. So, until one of my partners in crime elsewhere sends me copies of the articles, I’m kind of stuck. [ADDENDUM: I got them overnight.]

Fortunately, even though I hate to be left out of this party, even if for a day or two, there’s always plenty more blogging material out there. It’s even appropriate, given how recently I wrote about the politics of the antivaccine movement, and how antivaccine quackery is the quackery that knows little in the way of political boundaries, with both sides being prone to antivaccine ideas. True, the right and the left seem to come to their antivaccine ideas from different directions. For example, lefty antivaccinationists tend to come to their views from crunchy beliefs in an idealized concept of what is “natural” and in “natural healing” combined with a major distrust of big business, in particular big pharma. In contrast, righty antivaccinationists tend to come to it through the idea of “health freedom,” in which anything resembling government coercion is to be resisted and any attempt to regulate medicine is viewed with suspicion. Besides, after experiencing such an awesome lovefest from my readers due to my belated mention of my ninth blogiversary, it’s time for some Insolence again that’s likely to tick off someone at least. Orac just can’t handle such universal niceness for long. This post is likely to fix that for some, while others will pump their fists and shout, “Hell, yes!” Which are you? Let’s find out.

It all started, as it not too infrequently does, when post over at that happy home for wanderingly daft antivaccinationists, the Age of Autism caught my eye a couple of days ago. (Yes, I know it’s a bad idea to expose my neurons to such neuron-apoptosing nonsense as the regular content of AoA, but it is at times a convenient source of blog material and my neurons are hardened from years of regular exposure.) It was by a contributor of whom I had never heard before named Adriana Gamondes, entitled Libertarian Backlash against Reason Magazine’s “Corporatist,” “Pseudolibertarian” Compulsory Vaccine Campaign. In particular, Mrs. Gamondes is touting an article published at a website of which I had never heard before, Police State USA. Actually, I must just not have remembered her, because she’s definitely contributed to AoA before on several occasions. Indeed, her “work,” such as it is, rivals the looniest of the crew at AoA for sheer brain death (of both the writer and the reader, alas). She fits right in, given that according to this post from 2009 she is “the mother of twins who are currently recovering from vaccine-induced GI disorders.”

What’s interesting is this passage from Gamondes:

Age of Autism is a politically agnostic forum but not apolitical. To quote Herman Melville, “There seems no reason why serviceable truth should keep cloistered because not partisan.” There are rare exceptions to unilateral mainstream news compliance with government demands that critical views of vaccines be censored. PSUSA has done an elegant job ignoring the memo and explaining why compulsory medicine cannot be legitimately argued from a liberty position.

Except that I would argue that AoA is not exactly politically agnostic. After all, several of its members are prominent in the Canary Party, an antivaccine organization that advocates against vaccines, to the point of buying off politicians and lobbying. Fortunately, it has not had a lot of success thus far, but it keeps trying. It also has forged ties with at least one Tea Party-affiliated group in California. Heck, Mike Adams even endorsed them. In other words, AoA tends to lean right, towards the Libertarian end of the spectrum, and Gamondes’ likes rhetoric that could have been written by Mikey himself.

But first, let’s take a look at what set Police State USA off. It’s an article from a couple of weeks ago by Ronald Bailey over at Reason Magazine entitled Refusing Vaccination Puts Others At Risk: A pragmatic argument for coercive vaccination. Now, believe it or not, I actually read Reason. I used to read it more regularly, but then my politics drifted away from that direction, to the point where reading that magazine would actually annoy me. However, this particular article by Bailey actually made sense. Basically, he claims that Libertarianism is not a justification for putting others at risk:

There would be no argument against allowing people to refuse vaccination if they and their families would suffer alone the consequences of their foolhardiness. It would be their right to forego misery-reducing and life-preserving treatments. But that is not the case in the real world.

Correct, and that’s what those of us who promote vaccination have been saying all along. Indeed, we’ve been pointing out that antivaccinationists endanger everyone because they promote the degradation of herd immunity. Bailey agrees, and he dutifully discusses the Project Tycho, which, as I pointed out, shows how well vaccines have worked over the last century. He also debunks some common antivaccine talking points, such as the highly intellectually dishonest trope that “vaccines didn’t save us,” while listing how much children owe to vaccines, including the newer ones that antivaccinationists like to dump on, such as the rotavirus vaccine and the chickenpox vaccine. Based on herd immunity, Bailey asserts (and I agree):

People who refuse vaccination for themselves and their children are free-riding off herd immunity. Anti-vaccination folks are taking advantage of the fact that most people around them have chosen the minimal risk of vaccination, thus acting as a firewall protecting them from disease. But if enough refuse, the firewall comes down and other people get hurt.

Oliver Wendell Holmes articulated a good libertarian principle when he said, “The right to swing my fist ends where the other man’s nose begins.” Holmes’ observation is particularly salient in the case of whooping cough shots.

And:

To borrow Holmes’ metaphor, people who refuse vaccination are asserting that they have a right to “swing” their microbes at other people. There is no principled libertarian case for their free-riding refusal to take responsibility for their own microbes.

I’d agree that there’s no “principled Libertarian case,” but that doesn’t mean that there isn’t a Libertarian case. It boils down to, basically, “Screw you. I don’t care if my decision affects others.” Come to think of it, a whole lot of Libertarianism boils down to this in actual practice, the highfalutin rhetoric of the more practical Libertarians like Bailey notwithstanding. Don’t believe me? Take a look at how Police State USA puts it. First, it equates the ability to refuse vaccinations with free markets and any sort of mandated vaccination as being anathema to a free market. This is very critical to understanding this sort of thinking. Libertarianism appears to worship the free market above all. Consequently, all a Libertarian like those at PSUSA has to do to justify anything is to try to link it to the free market somehow and link what it dislikes to crushing the free market. Why? Because to this brand of Libertarianism the free market is a Good That Shall Not Be Questioned. Ever. Under any circumstances.

The other Good That Shall Never Be Questioned is utter unfettered individual rights without consideration for others. Indeed, PSUSA complains about any form of collectivism, anything that is instituted for the greatest good for the greatest number of people, specifically objecting to the use of the term “herd immunity,” likening it to cattle. I’m only impressed that this anonymous writer refrained from using the word “sheeple.” That would have been the perfect topper to this little screed. As it is, I’ll have to amuse myself with passages like this:

The only thing more full of holes than Bailey’s doctrine is his ridiculous argument against people having “a right to swing their microbes at other people.” His implication is that the spread of germs is an initiation of force from one person against others, therefore justifying state intervention to mitigate that initiation of force. This cheapens the definition of force to an utterly ubiquitous level. A single person picks up and loses an incalculable number of microorganisms per day. This is done invisibly, without a person’s knowledge, whether he is healthy or sick, without malice, without intent, and without the ability to stop it (even if you try). No one can know how many billions of microorganisms were exchanged in a given day, nor who will be susceptible to them. No one can prove beyond reasonable doubt which person dropped which microorganism.

The stupid, it doth burn. Of course, we all carry microbes and exchange them with each other every day. However, there’s a difference between just microbes and microbes that cause serious diseases that can be vaccinated against. If you can prevent endangering others with microbes that you carry or prevent your children from endangering other children by taking a simple precaution that is incredibly safe for you and your child, then why wouldn’t that be an assault?

Of course, Reason readers tend to think along the same way that Police State USA thinks, namely, “Screw you! I don’t care if what I do hurts you.” Just take a look at the Facebook post for Bailey’s article. It’s peppered with comments like:

Explain how not getting a vaccination yourself puts someone else at risk. If you get sick and they are vaccinated then they won’t get sick because they a vaccinated against it right? Oh, vaccinations don’t actually protect against getting sick?!? Then why do we get them.

The stupid, it burns. And I do mean you, Parrish Miller, whoever you are.

And:

Herd Immunity is more Bullshit from Big Pharma with NO logic behind it!

And:

How about “I DON’T WANT TO!”? That’s about as libertarian as it gets. There is no such thing as a positive obligation in libertarian philosophy and that includes an obligation to be vaccinated.

Which is as good a reason as any as to why I shucked my Libertarian tendencies. (Well, that, and my increasing realization over the last 15 years that an “unfettered” free market is not a panacea.)

Sadly, Ronald Bailey is fighting a losing battle. On vaccines, he really appears not to be in tune with his fellow Libertarians, who are all too prone to denying science when it inconveniently clashes with their worship of the free market and individual freedom above all. As I’ve said time and time again, the entire “health freedom” movement (a.k.a. the freedom of quacks from having the government interfere with their plying their quackery), of which the antivaccine movement is but a part, is very much at home within the Libertarian movement. Indeed, one can say that it’s as pure an expression of Libertarianism as there is: Don’t regulate quackery, as the free market will take care of it all (you know, much the way it did so effectively before the creation of the FDA and other regulatory agencies, with wandering snake oil salesmen and pharmaceutical companies bringing drugs to market without testing them) and no one can tell me what I can and can’t put into my body (never mind whether it’s based on misinformation and false claims or not). Don’t require me to do anything that will benefit me and my fellow citizens, such as vaccinating. And, above all, don’t discuss the delicate balance between personal liberty and what benefits and harms society. If you do, you’ll get the kind of reaction that Ronald Bailey got. That’s the problem that Libertarians trying to take a reasonable position with respect to medicine run into that they don’t want to admit. Quackery and antivaccine views go together with Libertarianism like show trials and dictatorships. The more scientifically inclined Libertarians know that, and it bothers them. Unfortunately, they are very quickly reminded of it by their fellow Libertarians when they try to make a “principled Libertarian case” for vaccine mandates, as Ronald Bailey was.

By Orac

Orac is the nom de blog of a humble surgeon/scientist who has an ego just big enough to delude himself that someone, somewhere might actually give a rodent's posterior about his copious verbal meanderings, but just barely small enough to admit to himself that few probably will. That surgeon is otherwise known as David Gorski.

That this particular surgeon has chosen his nom de blog based on a rather cranky and arrogant computer shaped like a clear box of blinking lights that he originally encountered when he became a fan of a 35 year old British SF television show whose special effects were renowned for their BBC/Doctor Who-style low budget look, but whose stories nonetheless resulted in some of the best, most innovative science fiction ever televised, should tell you nearly all that you need to know about Orac. (That, and the length of the preceding sentence.)

DISCLAIMER:: The various written meanderings here are the opinions of Orac and Orac alone, written on his own time. They should never be construed as representing the opinions of any other person or entity, especially Orac's cancer center, department of surgery, medical school, or university. Also note that Orac is nonpartisan; he is more than willing to criticize the statements of anyone, regardless of of political leanings, if that anyone advocates pseudoscience or quackery. Finally, medical commentary is not to be construed in any way as medical advice.

To contact Orac: [email protected]

588 replies on “Why are antivaccinationists so at home with Libertarianism?”

I’ve gone ’round and ’round with some of my Lib friends on this issue.

IMO they’re using the label of Libertarian to justify being sanctimonious, selfish aholes.

Yes, yes, it’s your right to determine what you do to your body – but that doesn’t give you the right to intentionally risk the health of others via your execution of that right – which is what refusing vaccination does.

I have one (now ex) friend who actually said that, “If my not vaccinating myself or my kid causes someone else’s kid to die – that’s just too bad for them. They should have been healthier. It’s not my fault nor my problem.”

I was actually speechless.

Stopping after the first paragraph to post this: on twitter, the hashtag #icanhazpdf with the citation often leads to good results.

The reality of this argument against is, “Since people can’t tell I’m free-riding on herd immunity, my choice that harms others is perfectly acceptable.” They just don’t want to admit they are behaving that way.

@Orac – actually, I find Libertarians to be definitely at odds with the “Free Market” i.e. the Corporations and businesses that they presume to support….as a CEO, I would certainly mandate that my employees get all of their vaccinations (in a Libertarian Paradise) and stay up to date or I would fire them.

Unvaccinated employees endanger my profits, since sick employees aren’t contributing to the bottom line & certainly put my other employees at risk of the same – so, as an unfettered business man, I should make it a condition of employment to get vaccinated (and if you can’t get vaccinated for medical reasons – all the better that all of the other employees who can, do).

If the employees don’t like it, they can quit and work somewhere else, right?

Well, this made me mad, but not at you.

Like Lawrence, I’d argue that not vaccination hurts the “free market” more than it helps, except for maybe those who make money from hospital stays and long-term antibiotics or antivirals, makers of hearing aids, CIs, caskets, and funeral homes. Plus, I tell our employees all the time, while it may be your “right to decide what goes in your body” it is your privilege to work at this hospital.

No one can prove beyond reasonable doubt which person dropped which microorganism

When did “reasonable doubt” become part of epidemiology? Oh, wait, like they are wont to do, they’re looking at this from a legal standpoint of how much they can personally get away with, rather than contributing to someone’s needless death. It requires entire brain-shifts to think like them, and god it hurts.

The Ron Paul/Rand Paul/Les Paul crowd would have a better shot of justifying their beliefs on the basis of libertarianism if they weren’t also chock full of pseudoscientific nonsense.

“I’d agree that there’s no “principled Libertarian case,” but that doesn’t mean that there isn’t a Libertarian case. It boils down to, basically, “Screw you. I don’t care if my decision affects others.”

A quoted followup comment states it even more succinctly (“I Don’t Want To”) but to capture the full flavor of the mature and highly reasoned Libertarian position, it should read “I Don’t Want To And You Can’t Make Me”.

It’s basically a spoiled three-year-old’s approach to living in society.

a few things…

Gamondes has been around – I’ve read a few of her more bizarre entries.

ah yes, the free market- tells us about what a stabilising force it has been in earlier days..

lord! next they’re being dragging in their fav economic theories to jusify their selfishness
( -btw- low taxes mean that the general population often is ill-educated and public services deteriorate or are non-existent- who wants to live in a place like that? Higher taxes mean that I live in a more civilised environment- AND I have been to semi-tropical, small government ‘paradises’- not my cup of tea)

the idea of western democracies being ‘police states’ is an everyday meme at PRN and NaturalNews

If you want to visit a black hole / sinkhole/ quagmire of libertarianism applied to vaccine ( dis) information, see Robert Schecter’s The Vaccine Machine facebook page ( and separate blog). It’s hugely popular and very activist.

Mikey takes on the newest research about supplements.

Hello Mrs Woo, glad to see you.

@ Chris Hickie:

I’m glad to hear that! Don’t you live in sort of a libertarian-friendly area? -btw- when Adams returned after his hiatus in Ecuador, he lived in Tucson prior to moving to Austin.

Lawrence @4: You imply that Libertarianism is a coherent political philosophy, which assumes facts not in evidence. About the only coherent philosophical underpinning I have been able to discern in Libertarianism is IGMFY (the first three letters stand for I Got Mine; I assume most RI readers can figure out the rest).

No one can prove beyond reasonable doubt which person dropped which microorganism

Funny thing is is that we can in a lot of cases with molecular epidemiological techniques and contact tracing.

A couple of points:
There is a long tradition of societies coping with infectious disease by quarantining infected individuals. If you have the right to refuse vaccines, then we have the right to exclude you from schools, workplaces, etc. Perhaps a bell around the neck might be useful to warn others that you are a potential hazard.

Your choice to refuse vaccines does not obligate the rest of society to pay for the expense of the consequences. People who refuse vaccines for non-medical reasons could have a clause in their health insurance that denies coverage for illness resulting from that choice.

@Science Mom “Funny thing is is that we can in a lot of cases with molecular epidemiological techniques and contact tracing.”

🙂 That makes it interesting. So libertarians would have no issues with a person who is harmed from microbes dropped* from unvaccinated libertarians suing them through the courts for pain, suffering, ongoing medical treatment, loss of enjoyment of life, loss of earnings potential, etc?

*for some reason, this phrase has me thinking of Hansel and Gretel and breadcrumbs. It’s early morning and I have had little sleep.

@ Denice–I live in one of the zaniest states in the country. Don’t get me wrong–I was born in Arizona and I love it here, but there is almost nothing consistent or predictable here when it comes to politics. And yep, there’s a libertarian/conspiracy theorist railing away online right now in the comments section on that article I cited above.

And yep, there’s a libertarian/conspiracy theorist railing away online right now in the comments section on that article I cited above.

It could be worse. In the state where I live, these types are too frequently elected to the state legislature. When you have one legislator for every 3200 residents, and more state reps than polling precincts*, it’s easy for these people to slip under the radar.

*Our state constitution restricts where district boundaries can be drawn (they must coincide with township or ward boundaries), so multi-member districts are inevitable.

Touching on the vitamin question, I just wanted to be the first to say the phrase ‘expensive urine’ which was funny when I was first taught it at medical school 37 years ago (but that was in the UK and the vitamin craze never took off there like it did in the US), and is still an excellent way of describing what the average multivitamin provides.

Do you read what is in the vaccines and are you aware of how much it profits pharmaceutical companies to sell more, and are you aware of the success rate or lack thereof of all of these vaccines and the harmful affects of some of the contents of the vaccines? Learn that before commenting that we need all of these vaccines pushed at us. For instance, research, the people most likely to develop whooping cough are those who received the vaccine. For instance. vaccine manufacturers know that shingles (same virus as chickenpox and herpes) can be knocked back by Lysine, an amino acid found in foods. Are we told this? No, it would hamper vaccine sales.

Libertarian believe in following our Constitution. If you think that is whacky, then you are part of the problem that has this country in shambles.

And while we are here, let’s look at the difference between Republic and Democracy. The USA is a republic. That means we follow our Constitution. Democracy men as we follow the popular vote. They are not the same. Democracy can sway the whole basis the country was founded upon.

Not quite a coverall, CJ, but at least a diagonal in AV bingo.

Now, which ruling determined the constitution included the right to endanger the health of others? I’m on a smart phone, so it’s impractical for me to find the one that ruled it wasn’t in the constitution, but I’m sure others will.

Also, a hearty [citations needed]

Adriana Gamondes is a poster artist and does much (if not all) of the pictorial layouts for Age of Autism, The Canary Party and its affiliates:

https://www.google.com/search?q=posters+adriana+gamondes&client=firefox-a&hs=LWg&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&channel=np&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=DdGxUq2ZMvO-sQTCnIKoBg&ved=0CCsQsAQ&biw=1093&bih=429

Who could ever forget this example of Gamondes’ talent…which somehow got pulled from Age of Autism?

http://skepacabra.wordpress.com/tag/adriana-gamondes/

A lot of these comments I’m reading are based on the flawed idea that all vaccines are good and do what they are purported to do.

BTW, here are the ingredients, from CDC, of your flu vaccine: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/parents/vaccine-decision/ingredients.html

If I followed western medicine, instead of doing what is right for my health, I would be on at least five different pharmaceutical prescription drugs? Because of looking into how my body works, along with the help of a nutritionist, SpectraCell Labs intracellular testing (not costly), and a couple of Naturpoathic doctors, including Joe Mercola, OD, I am very healthy and pharmaceutical free!

For instance, instead of taking a pharmaceutical drug for slow thyroid/hypothyroidism, I found, from Mercola’s site, that our thyroid sneed iodine. The Endocrinologist I saw said nothing about that. She just wanted to write a prescription. I went home, researched, and now take a kelp supplement, chock full of iodine. My hypothyroid symptoms and problem are gone and given the thumbs up from same endocrinologist.

ADD symptoms are gone, along with yearly ear infections and high blood sugar after going off of gluten and dairy. I found this info with the help of a different endocrinologist, and ENT doctor and another Naturopathic/endocrinologist OD, MD.
I had been offered for that block of problems two different amphetamines, a diabetic drug, antibiotics and surgery on my deviated septum.

Many of the comments in this string sound like you accept what you are told without question. If your car repairman came to you asking for money to go to the fix your car, do you just hand it over without question? Or do you think about the variables and everything surrounding it. I do the latter. And I, likewise, do the same with government and with doctors and you should think things through more, too.

I would just like to say that reading the comments made my day. Most people I am around on a daily basis view libertarians as “reasonable” and “not hurting anyone”.

And the ones I know that ARE libertarians are or have been on government assistance, pay piddling amounts of taxes, are on Medicare, the whole ball of wax.

A few years back I worked for a company whose psychotic CEO literally had every Ayn Rand bucket of tripe on the shelf… a company started with a government grant.

Oh sweet Jesus I hate libertarians.

I don’t think you can correlate beliefs in “natural healing” or other forms of the supernatural with either the political left or right. I don’t believe they differ in how they come to their beliefs. There are some things which are orthogonal to politics, and this is one of them. If anything, I’d say that a strong belief in “health freedom” may drive people toward libertarianism, rather than the other way around. Always be careful where you point that arrow of causation. It’s sharp!

Lawrence,

I find Libertarians to be definitely at odds with the “Free Market” i.e. the Corporations and businesses that they presume to support,

I would hope you’d never find someone who believed that a company could base its internal policies on purely libertarian principles. A single craftsman working at his/her/its bench or with an assistant, perhaps. Larger companies are run in a way that would, if they were governments, be referred to as communist.

I’d thought that would be obvious to the most casual observer, but I haven’t checked with Libertarians on their view of such things.

To be an assault the person would have to know they or their child is ill and intentionally expose someone else.. Like a parent taking a child to a chicken pox party and then to school, exposing others so that they’ll get natural immunity (and in torts you’d call it battery). Just not taking the precaution is negligence. For an example not in the vaccine context, from the laissez faire days, see Smith v. Baker, 20 F. 709 (C.C.S.D.N.Y. 1884) – infection with whooping cough.

As a point of discussion, how far does the principle go?

Let’s assume the general proposition that by not getting vaccinated (in the absence of mitigating circumstances) one has, in effect, swung one’s fist far enough to at least brush the tip of another person’s nose. Refusing to pay one’s taxes (as determined by current tax law – though I make it clear that this would not include taking every deduction and opportunity to reduce one’s taxes allowed) might be also be considered in the same vein.

What other behavior might the government be justified in mandating/restricting for the same reason?

“If your car repairman came to you asking for money to go to the fix your car, do you just hand it over without question?”

No, I go to random websites and listen to advice from people with no training in car repair, plus uncorroborated anecdotes from Internet forum posters.

My car’s wheels were loose and wobbly and terrible noises were coming from the engine compartment. But after pouring Miracle Glurge into my crankcase, I not only solved those problems but turned my old Saturn into a Porsche!

And you can’t prove me wrong.

Slight correction: The Canary Party has collaborated with Tea Party groups outside California. About a year ago, the Canary Party participated in a “Maine Liberty Summit” that also included the Maine Tea Party Patriots, the John Birch Society, and the Young Americans for Liberty (i.e. Ron Paul supporters). Ginger Taylor helped organized the event and promoted it on her Facebook page.

Speaking of Ginger, her Facebook profile lists her as **the** campaign manager for Mike Wallace, who was a Republican candidate for Maine’s state senate in the 2012 election. He was defeated.

Cj: “If I followed western medicine, instead of doing what is right for my health, ”

So you should be okay with the DTaP and varicella vaccines since they were developed in Japan. Also Japanese researchers worked on statins and colonoscopy.

The term “western medicine” is fairly racist.

Also Marcela is not an optometrist (OD), but an osteopathic (DO). Though now he is just pseudoscience shill.

@Darwy,

“If my not vaccinating myself or my kid causes someone else’s kid to die – that’s just too bad for them.

I am very curious – had the person said “What if I vaccinate myself or my kid and I get an honest to gosh vaccine injury that leaves me scarred, arthritic, or dead (say from anaphylaxis)?”, what would have been your reaction?

Note: the odds of any such occurrence are very small and and based on relative risks well worth the risk. And I have certainly gotten plenty of immunizations over my life. But I’m curious what the answer would be.

In other anti-vax news:
(@ PRN) Null and Gale critique Project Tycho, in a new article which the former read aloud
a. they find it lacking
b. Null doesn’t know how to pronounce ‘Tycho’; wonder what he does with ‘Brahe’?

If your car repairman came to you asking for money to go to the fix your car, do you just hand it over without question?

No, based on my “research” I’d first try chelating the car every three or four hours for years to remove the mercury that no one can convince me is not responsible for the problem, but if my car is a nonresponder I might try using industrial bleach just in case it’s worms.

Oh goodie, a live one.

Do you read what is in the vaccines

Yes.

are you aware of how much it profits pharmaceutical companies to sell more

Yep: not a whole lot. You are aware that the profit margins on vaccines are so crappy the government has had to pay them to keep making them, right? As far as volume, they are not even in the top 10. Statins and dick pills, that’s where the money is.

You could have looked that up. Either you are lazy or you are a liar. Which one is it?

and are you aware of the success rate or lack thereof of all of these vaccines

Yes. I noticed a distinct drop in sales of iron lungs since the 1960s, for example. Or the eradication of smallpox. Or the drop of measles deaths and permanent disabilities. I can do this all day.

and the harmful affects of some of the contents of the vaccines?

We all see how you phrased that, weasel. Yes, there are awful things in vaccines that you can die from in the right dosage. Like water. On the other hand, none of the ingredients and pollutants and contaminants and byproducts present in vaccines are in a high enough dosage to do harm.

But again, you could have looked that up. Lazy or liar?

the people most likely to develop whooping cough are those who received the vaccine.

Oh for crying out loud. Do we really have to throw in basic statistics for you? No vaccine is 100% effective. Let’s say it’s 80% effective. Let’s take a 100 people and give the vaccine to 98 of them. Now let’s expose all of them to the virus. Assuming no herd immunity, and 100% communicability, you’d see 19 vaccinated sick people and 2 unvaccinated sick people.

Which group do you want to be in?

For instance. vaccine manufacturers know that shingles (same virus as chickenpox and herpes) can be knocked back by Lysine, an amino acid found in foods.

They know no such thing. The people that “know” this are usually places that sell Lysine supplements. What does that tell you?

Libertarian believe in following our Constitution.

…when it suits you. We know cupcake.

If you think that is whacky, then you are part of the problem that has this country in shambles.

Please explain how the country is in shambles, and specifically how not following the constitution is responsible for that.

And while we are here, let’s look at the difference between Republic and Democracy. The USA is a republic. That means we follow our Constitution. Democracy men as we follow the popular vote. They are not the same. Democracy can sway the whole basis the country was founded upon.

This is pig-ignorant in so many ways I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

Are you saying democracies do not have constitutions?

Are you saying democracies do not have checks and balances?

Are you saying the constitution cannot be changed?

Are you saying that in a republic majority votes do not affect the constitution and its application?

A lot of these comments I’m reading are based on the flawed idea that all vaccines are good and do what they are purported to do.

But they do. This is not really up for discussion, moron. Seen a lot of neurologically damaged children limping down the street in braces because of polio lately?

This is a random, bald assertion that vaccines do not work as advertised, and until such time as you attempt to provide ANY EVIDENCE WHATSOEVER contradicting the mountains of basic statistics of disease incidence decreasing after vaccination for them was instated, you are just blowing smoke.

BTW, here are the ingredients, from CDC, of your flu vaccine: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/parents/vaccine-decision/ingredients.html

Yes, and you still haven’t really gotten to what’s so scary. Is it all the dihydrogen monoxide?

Let me guess. It’s formaldehyde, right? Aluminum? Which one scares you the most, cupcake?

If I followed western medicine, instead of doing what is right for my health,

Holy false dichotomy, Batman!

But hey, you, intrepid warrior of the 101st Keyboarders, have found out that the real mission of every medical school is to NOT do what is right for the patient’s health.

Do you even realize how deeply insulting that is?

I would be on at least five different pharmaceutical prescription drugs

[Citation seriously fucking needed]

Because of looking into how my body works

Oh, hang back people — this is one of the Special Snowflake(TM) contingent, whose body works differently than anybody else’s.

along with the help of a nutritionist, SpectraCell Labs intracellular testing (not costly), and a couple of Naturpoathic doctors, including Joe Mercola, OD, I am very healthy and pharmaceutical free!

And you are totally NOT shilling for properly capitalized SpectraCell(R) Labs(TM) intracellular testing. Also, Joe Mercola does not make any money shilling things. Also, I am very healthy and pharmaceutical free, but a doctor would totally prescribe a drug rather than a supplement. The doctor has a COI, not Joe Mercola or SpectraCell(R) Labs(TM), who are totally not costly. Did I mention they are totally not costly? You should totally check them out.

For instance, instead of taking a pharmaceutical drug for slow thyroid/hypothyroidism, I found, from Mercola’s site, that our thyroid sneed iodine.

There are other things in your body that need iodine, jackwagon.

The Endocrinologist I saw said nothing about that. She just wanted to write a prescription.

I am sure you asked her if there were nutritional options rather than sitting there like a muppet, going home and raping Google in an attempt to prove her wrong. I’m positive. You seem so unbiased!

I went home, researched, and now take a kelp supplement, chock full of iodine.

I do hope you go back for actual tests every now and then, because by doing this you’re putting yourself at risk for hypothyroidism and autoimmune thyroiditis.

My hypothyroid symptoms and problem are gone and given the thumbs up from same endocrinologist.

Oh, never mind. Good.

ADD symptoms are gone, along with yearly ear infections and high blood sugar after going off of gluten and dairy

So you found out you have allergies! Bully for you, cupcake!

I found this info with the help of a different endocrinologist, and ENT doctor and another Naturopathic/endocrinologist OD, MD.

Yes…?

I had been offered for that block of problems two different amphetamines, a diabetic drug, antibiotics and surgery on my deviated septum.

Maybe you should learn how to talk to your doctor. Also, in what universe does a gluten-free diet cure a deviated septum?

Many of the comments in this string sound like you accept what you are told without question.

All together now:

IT’S ALWAYS PROJECTION.

How much have you questioned what SpectraCell(R) told you? Or Joe Mercola? It sounds like you didn’t question what they told you at all.

If your car repairman came to you asking for money to go to the fix your car, do you just hand it over without question?

No, but you do. Good thing SpectraCell(TM) is so affordable. Good thing Joe Mercola is always right.

Right?

Or do you think about the variables and everything surrounding it. I do the latter.

Bull fucking shit you do. You found an article that said “thyroid issues? buy our kelp!” and what did you do? You sure as hell didn’t think about variables. You didn’t think about anything other than a nice, easy, clean fix that did not involve them evil western medicine doctor people or the government. Because that’s what you wanted to believe in the first place.

Stop lying to yourself. You’re not fooling anyone else.

And I, likewise, do the same with government and with doctors and you should think things through more, too.

(Holy hakalela. I swear, I did not even read ahead. How about that for predicting a thought process?)

Why distrust the government and every single accredited physician but not SpectraCell(TM) and Joe Mercola?

Where do you buy your kelp supplement?

Do you read what is in the vaccines”

Yes, I have. In addition to antigens specific to the infectious disease they are designed to address. they contain known amounts of preservatives, adjuvants and other excipients which improve their efficacy, as well as trace amounts of some chemical entities remaining from their manufacture None of which are present at concentrations demonstrated to be toxic or otherwise endanger health.

and are you aware of how much it profits pharmaceutical companies to sell more

yes: not very much. The return on investment assoiciated with vaccines is less than that for other pharmaceutical products. It would at much more profitable for a company to sell the antibiotics needed to treat infection once acquired than it is to sell vaccines to prevent the infection from occurring.

and are you aware of the success rate or lack thereof of all of these vaccines and the harmful affects of some of the contents of the vaccines?

Yes– in terms of saving lives and preventing suffering vaccines are arguably the single most successful medical intervention we as a species have ever developed. (The only intervention I can think of that might challenge for the lead would be the development of surgical anesthesia.)

Adverse events associated with vaccines are both quantifiable and well understood: those that are common are minor and transient (soreness at the site of injection, mild fever, etc.) while those that are serious (GBS, encephalopathy) are all but vanishingly rare.
Any rational risk versus benefit assessment overwhelmingly indicates that the risks of being vaccinated are orders of magnitude less than the risk of remaining vulnerable to infection.

Consider measles: measles infections cause encephalopathy in about 1 out of every 1000 cases, while the risk of encephalopathy associated with the MMR vaccine is less than 1 out of every one million vaccinations(seehttp://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/00046738.htm).

Learn that before commenting that we need all of these vaccines pushed at us. For instance, research, the people most likely to develop whooping cough are those who received the vaccine.

I’m sorry, but this statement is false. During an outbreak children who’ve been fully vaccinated against pertussis are 6 times less likely to become infected than children who have never been vaccinated against pertussis (and when they do become infected they typically experience less severe illness than those who have not been vaccinated).

What’s confusing you is that because so many more children have been vaccinated than remain unvaccinated the absolute number of cases in vaccinated children may exceed that in unvaccinated children.

For instance. vaccine manufacturers know that shingles (same virus as chickenpox and herpes) can be knocked back by Lysine, an amino acid found in foods.

Citation needed.

Libertarian believe in following our Constitution. If you think that is whacky, then you are part of the problem that has this country in shambles.

If that were all they believed in there’d be no problem. Unfortunately, they seem also to oppose the government’s constitutional authority to regulate commerce, provide for the welfare of the nation’s citizens, etc., should be ignored.

And while we are here, let’s look at the difference between Republic and Democracy. The USA is a republic.

Actually the US is a constitutional democratic republic. While representatives are democratically elected to govern a constitution defines how the government is structures, establishing checks and balances, limiting government powers and authority, vesting citizens with individual civil rights, etc.

Oh goodie, a live one.

Do you read what is in the vaccines

Yes.

are you aware of how much it profits pharmaceutical companies to sell more

Yep: not a whole lot. You are aware that the profit margins on vaccines are so crappy the government has had to pay them to keep making them, right? As far as volume, they are not even in the top 10. Statins and dick pills, that’s where the money is.

You could have looked that up. Either you are lazy or you are a liar. Which one is it?

and are you aware of the success rate or lack thereof of all of these vaccines

Yes. I noticed a distinct drop in sales of iron lungs since the 1960s, for example. Or the eradication of smallpox. Or the drop of measles deaths and permanent disabilities. I can do this all day.

and the harmful affects of some of the contents of the vaccines?

We all see how you phrased that, weasel. Yes, there are awful things in vaccines that you can die from in the right dosage. Like water. On the other hand, none of the ingredients and pollutants and contaminants and byproducts present in vaccines are in a high enough dosage to do harm.

But again, you could have looked that up. Lazy or liar?

the people most likely to develop whooping cough are those who received the vaccine.

Oh for crying out loud. Do we really have to throw in basic statistics for you? No vaccine is 100% effective. Let’s say it’s 80% effective. Let’s take a 100 people and give the vaccine to 98 of them. Now let’s expose all of them to the virus. Assuming no herd immunity, and 100% communicability, you’d see 19 vaccinated sick people and 2 unvaccinated sick people.

Which group do you want to be in?

For instance. vaccine manufacturers know that shingles (same virus as chickenpox and herpes) can be knocked back by Lysine, an amino acid found in foods.

They know no such thing. The people that “know” this are usually places that sell Lysine supplements. What does that tell you?

Libertarian believe in following our Constitution.

…when it suits you. We know cupcake.

If you think that is whacky, then you are part of the problem that has this country in shambles.

Please explain how the country is in shambles, and specifically how not following the constitution is responsible for that.

And while we are here, let’s look at the difference between Republic and Democracy. The USA is a republic. That means we follow our Constitution. Democracy men as we follow the popular vote. They are not the same. Democracy can sway the whole basis the country was founded upon.

This is pig-ignorant in so many ways I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

Are you saying democracies do not have constitutions?

Are you saying democracies do not have checks and balances?

Are you saying the constitution cannot be changed?

Are you saying that in a republic majority votes do not affect the constitution and its application?

A lot of these comments I’m reading are based on the flawed idea that all vaccines are good and do what they are purported to do.

But they do. This is not really up for discussion, moron. Seen a lot of neurologically damaged children limping down the street in braces because of polio lately?

This is a random, bald assertion that vaccines do not work as advertised, and until such time as you attempt to provide ANY EVIDENCE WHATSOEVER contradicting the mountains of basic statistics of disease incidence decreasing after vaccination for them was instated, you are just blowing smoke.

BTW, here are the ingredients, from CDC, of your flu vaccine: http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/parents/vaccine-decision/ingredients.html

Yes, and you still haven’t really gotten to what’s so scary. Is it all the dihydrogen monoxide?

Let me guess. It’s formaldehyde, right? Aluminum? Which one scares you the most, cupcake?

If I followed western medicine, instead of doing what is right for my health,

Holy false dichotomy, Batman!

But hey, you, intrepid warrior of the 101st Keyboarders, have found out that the real mission of every medical school is to NOT do what is right for the patient’s health.

Do you even realize how deeply insulting that is?

I would be on at least five different pharmaceutical prescription drugs

[Citation seriously fucking needed]

Because of looking into how my body works

Oh, hang back people — this is one of the Special Snowflake(TM) contingent, whose body works differently than anybody else’s.

along with the help of a nutritionist, SpectraCell Labs intracellular testing (not costly), and a couple of Naturpoathic doctors, including Joe Mercola, OD, I am very healthy and pharmaceutical free!

And you are totally NOT shilling for properly capitalized SpectraCell(R) Labs(TM) intracellular testing. Also, Joe Mercola does not make any money shilling things. Also, I am very healthy and pharmaceutical free, but a doctor would totally prescribe a drug rather than a supplement. The doctor has a COI, not Joe Mercola or SpectraCell(R) Labs(TM), who are totally not costly. Did I mention they are totally not costly? You should totally check them out.

For instance, instead of taking a pharmaceutical drug for slow thyroid/hypothyroidism, I found, from Mercola’s site, that our thyroid sneed iodine.

There are other things in your body that need iodine, jackwagon.

The Endocrinologist I saw said nothing about that. She just wanted to write a prescription.

I am sure you asked her if there were nutritional options rather than sitting there like a muppet, going home and raping Google in an attempt to prove her wrong. I’m positive. You seem so unbiased!

I went home, researched, and now take a kelp supplement, chock full of iodine.

I do hope you go back for actual tests every now and then, because by doing this you’re putting yourself at risk for hypothyroidism and autoimmune thyroiditis.

My hypothyroid symptoms and problem are gone and given the thumbs up from same endocrinologist.

Oh, never mind. Good.

ADD symptoms are gone, along with yearly ear infections and high blood sugar after going off of gluten and dairy

So you found out you have allergies! Bully for you, cupcake!

I found this info with the help of a different endocrinologist, and ENT doctor and another Naturopathic/endocrinologist OD, MD.

Yes…?

I had been offered for that block of problems two different amphetamines, a diabetic drug, antibiotics and surgery on my deviated septum.

Maybe you should learn how to talk to your doctor. Also, in what universe does a gluten-free diet cure a deviated septum?

Many of the comments in this string sound like you accept what you are told without question.

All together now:

IT’S ALWAYS PROJECTION.

How much have you questioned what SpectraCell(R) told you? Or Joe Mercola? It sounds like you didn’t question what they told you at all.

If your car repairman came to you asking for money to go to the fix your car, do you just hand it over without question?

No, but you do. Good thing SpectraCell(TM) is so affordable. Good thing Joe Mercola is always right.

Right?

Or do you think about the variables and everything surrounding it. I do the latter.

Bull fucking shit you do. You found an article that said “thyroid issues? buy our kelp!” and what did you do? You sure as hell didn’t think about variables. You didn’t think about anything other than a nice, easy, clean fix that did not involve them evil western medicine doctor people or the government. Because that’s what you wanted to believe in the first place.

Stop lying to yourself. You’re not fooling anyone else.

And I, likewise, do the same with government and with doctors and you should think things through more, too.

(Holy hakalela. I swear, I did not even read ahead. How about that for predicting a thought process?)

Why distrust the government and every single accredited physician but not SpectraCell(TM) and Joe Mercola?

Where do you buy your kelp supplement?

As a follow-up to Science Mom’s post…we are able to determine the “index case” in a measles outbreak, via trace back investigations and by genotype:

http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/mm6013a6.htm

“….The investigation determined that the index patient was a U.S.-born child of Somali descent, aged 30 months, who developed a rash February 15, 14 days after returning from a trip to Kenya. The patient attended a drop-in child care center 1 day before rash onset; measles developed in three contacts at the center and in one household contact. Secondary and tertiary exposures occurred in two congregate living facilities for homeless persons (four patients), an emergency department (two patients), and households (two patients). A virus isolate from the index patient was genotyped at CDC as B3, which is endemic in sub-Saharan Africa….”

We are also able to determine the “index case” during tuberculosis outbreaks, via DNA fingerprinting of a culture positive sputum specimen and by SNA (Social Network Analysis):

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3650219/

Who could ever forget this example of Gamondes’ talent…which somehow got pulled from Age of Autism?

Not only is that poster offensive, but it’s also a completely crappy photoshop job that wouldn’t pass muster at Fark.com.

I’m guessing that by “mandatory” vaccination they actually mean vaccine requirements for attending taxpayer-funded schools, right? Wouldn’t the Libertarian position be that there shouldn’t be taxpayer-funded schools to begin with? You have the kids, its your responsibility to pay for their education, not mine. Also, most of the Libertarian philosophy I’ve read states that the gov’t has a responsibility to protect its citizens from force or fraud, and that definitely includes regulating claims made by people pushing supplement and other forms of woo.

I have been interested in Libertarianism off and on for awhile now, but keep running into the same problems repeatedly mentioned above: it sounds good in principle, but its easy to see that pure Libertarianism would have profoundly negative consequences in practice. And after you’ve made exceptions for all of the things for which pure free-market Libertarianism wouldn’t work – health care, protecting the environment, the rights of children, etc – there’s not a whole lot left.

CJ, none of the ingredients listed at the link you provided have been shown to be harmful at the exposure levels you could receive as the result of vaccination.

For example, aluminum is one of the most ubiquitous elements on the planet and infants are exposed daily to much, much greater amounts of aluminum from dietary and environmental sources than they could possibly receive as the result of immunization. To put it in perspective, over the first 6 months of life an infant could be exposed to a maximum of 2.5 mg of aluminum as the result of routine immunizations. During those same 6 months it would be exposed to 10 mgs of aluminum if breast feeding; if receiving formula instead we’re talking about a 40 mgs of aluminum, and as much as 120 mgs if it’s receiving a soy-based formula.

The theoretical maximum exposure to formaldehyde from immunization would be at the scheduled 6 month visit, when the child could potentially receive up to 4 immunizations (HepB, DTaP, IPV and possibly influenza). This would expose them to around 310 ug of formaldehyde. That’s less formaldehyde than you’re exposed to simply as part of a normal diet (10,000 to 20,000 ug/daily) and in fact less than you’ll receive when by eating a single apple, (between 430 and 1100 ug formaldehyde). A normal liver produces more formaldehyde daily than you’d ever see due to vaccines.

Egg proteins? IF you’re allergic that would be a problem, which is why people with egg allergies cannot receive some vaccines (and which is why the rest of us can should be vaccinated, to maintain the herd immunity those with allergies rely on to avoid infection).

@Sarah: the very easy checklist you can use:

What about
– National defense
– Fire deparments
– Police
– Hospitals
– EPA
– OSHA
– Car safety regs
– NTSHB
– Building codes
– Local environmental code enforcement
– ATF
– FDA
– Educational standards (look up ACE)

Heck, there’s more, but start with those.

Orac wrote:

vitamin supplementation is not necessary for most people

The usual response to which, IME, is “how would I know I’m not one of the exceptions? Better to take supplements to be on the safe side.”

(Going to a doctor and getting tested for deficiencies could be one way of finding out, but doctors, being motivated solely by money derived from pharmaceuticals and not at all from such derived from supplements*, would likely lie about any positive tests in the hope you end up with a serious condition requiring prescription meds.)

(* No, I don’t know why supplements prescribed as treatment for a deficiency wouldn’t count as “pharmaceuticals”.)

BTW, The Federal government and States do have “police power” for involuntary quarantine/isolation of patients infected with highly infectious diseases:

http://www.ncsl.org/research/health/state-quarantine-and-isolation-statutes.aspx

I’ve actually seen cases of MDR TB where the patient is non-compliant and put under court order. Police officers are directed to pick up the patient and deliver him/her to the County hospital to be placed in strict respiratory isolation with 24/7 guards outside the hospital room.

As a libertarian parent, I give my baby the choice to eat lead or non-lead paint chips. After all, it’s in the spirit of personal choice/freedom and a free market economy.

Larger companies are run in a way that would, if they were governments, be referred to as communist.

Actually, they would be called dictatorships, though I will grant you that this is how nominally Communist governments generally operated in practice. This is because Communism, like Libertarianism, is a political belief system which sounds great in theory but whose successful implementation depends on counterfactual assumptions about human nature.

re my # 32 above:

The article is called ‘ Bill Gates’ Project Tycho and Vaccine Voodoo” which can be found at Green Med Info amongst other places.

I wrote a long post responding to the criticism of Bailey. He’s absolutely right on this one. I’m a libertarian and believe in free markets but I don’t see that free market has anything to do with this. It’s just a mantra being thrown out to justify rotten behavior. Jeffrey Singer wrote a response to Bailey that Reason hosted but I had trouble following it because it seems like just a bunch of libertarian words strung together.

This is what happens when people chase good idea into a corner, when they decide that they have to be the absolute purest brand of X, whatever political philosophy X is.

I’m Libertarian. I also have Tea Party sympathies (the “Taxed Enough, Already” part, mainly).

That said, I was vaccinated as required by the laws in place during the 1960s. And I vaccinated my kids.

As I see it, an unfettered free market isn’t a Libertarian tenet. Neither is the ‘right” to refuse vaccinations. To think otherwise only reveals radical thinking. I find those individuals at both ends- and the middle- of the political spectrum.

In the end, it’s all about the greater good vs. utter stupidity.

On vaccines, he really appears not to be in tune with his fellow Libertarians, who are all too prone to denying science when it inconveniently clashes with their worship of the free market and individual freedom above all.

I have often said that this is exactly the reason why so many libertarians are global warming deniers. In particular, there is no natural way in which CO2 emission creates a cost signal, so there’s no way the free market alone can address this problem successfully — “market-based solutions” only work if governments step in to create artificial disincentives. This is anathema to free-market fundamentalists, and the effect is to push them into wild contortions of motivated reasoning, so that the karma doesn’t run over their dogma.

Excellent. Out of mod @36 (currently).

I’d like to say, once more, that people should realize that this is one of the least moderated blogs dealing with vaccinations in existence. AND THIS GOES BOTH WAYS. What other blog would tolerate #17,, #21 and #36? AoA sure as Shinola would not.

As I see it, an unfettered free market isn’t a Libertarian tenet.

Then, by the definitions currently used by self-styled libertarians in the US today… you, sir, are No True Scotsman(TM).

That being said, what are your views on the random set of issues as I threw out @42?

Stu and JGC, thanks for your thorough takedown of Cj. I only had time a quick response before turning off the tablet, and getting to the mall to pick something up just as it opened and there was parking. Only to have the person in front of me refuse to drive his car through the four-way stop intersection. At least until I and all the cars behind me honked our horns. AAargh.

By now I have an image of Cj, as the libertarian driver who decided to stake out his own spot next to one of the four stop sighs. Because driving rules are to be ignored, just like public health rules.

Can’t even use the tablet as an excuse: “stop sighs” is “stop signs”… sigh.

Even as a libertarian, I’d say the reasons most people have for adopting that political philosophy aren’t very rational, or at least well thought-out. Someone said, “nothing hurts more than a bad argument for a position you hold dear”. I cringe every time I see anti-vaccination rhetoric coming from libertarian publications, primarily because it identifies them as being illiterate, intellectually lazy, and biased in the extreme. The truth is that their opposition to vaccination is based primarily on their political bias and not on any research showing harm or inefficacy (those are cherry-picked, as an afterthought). It’s a very similar thing to the Liberal’s and GMO’s.

Reason has touched on vaccines in the past – back in 2010, they did an expose on the vaccine-autism myth http://reason.com/blog/2010/05/06/reasontv-do-vaccines-cause-aut which got a lot of comments from the usual crowd, including a fellow who used to post on this blog at length.

It’s worth noting as well that the libertarian Popehat blog was one of the supporters of Kathleen Seidel when antivaccine activists tried to silence her some years back.

P.S. Cj – thanks for reminding us that government regulation requires that the ingredients of vaccines be printed on the insert, you big old state-worshipper you….

Two things:

With regard to the idea that refusing vaccination and shedding potentially fatal microbes at random is okay because there’s no aggressive intent toward the people who get sick, there are the concepts of criminal negligence, involuntary manslaughter, and depraved indifference to human life.

As for the worshippers of republics and haters of democracy: Soviet Russia, Nazi Germany, and Franco’s Spain were republics. Canada and Spain today are democracies and not republics. I know which ones I’d choose.

P.S. Cj – thanks for reminding us that government regulation requires that the ingredients of vaccines be printed on the insert, you big old state-worshipper you….

Just the CDC isn’t to be trusted! Liars! Pharma shills! Cover-ups! Brainwashing! Well, except for the VAERS, of course. *sarcasm*

@AOP – or anything related to the CDC or FDA that they feel supports their position…..

@ Stu – Is the list at #42 supposed to be a list of things libertarians would have a problem with? B/c I know they don’t have a problem with national defense or police (both come under the rubric of protecting citizens from force), and I imagine some agencies such as the FDA would be considered an acceptable part of the government’s responsibility to protect its citizens from fraud. As for firefighters, hospitals, etc – citizens would be free to provide those services either for profit or on a volunteer basis, but I think most libertarians would object to paying for them using tax dollars (at least at a federal level.) Of course, I’m still talking about abstract libertarian philosophy. In practice, it seems most people who call themselves libertarian want to keep the things that benefit them while getting rid of the things they don’t want to pay for/answer to. For example, all those mom’s over at AoA want the government to fund public schools and special ed programs for their kids, but they don’t want to accept government stipulations on attendance (like taking reasonable precautions to not get other people’s kids sick.)

Why do anti-vaccination and libertarianism go together? Neither requires intelligent thought.

But a question: how can arguments about how the great free market will raise all boats (if you are deserving, anyway) be coupled with a decrying of vaccinations because “big pharma makes tons of money from it”? Do those people not recognize how transparently stupid they are? (80% rhetorical question there)

After re-reading that last post, I just want to make it clear that I’m just stating libertarian philosophy as I understand it – I don’t necessarily agree with it. For example, at #40 I characterized the libertarian attitude towards education as “You have the kids, its your responsibility to pay for their education, not mine.” Which seems perfectly reasonable, until you reflect that the reason I have the option to not have kids (without causing the extinction of the human race) is that other people are having kids at more than replacement rates. B/c others have decided to take on the expense and self-sacrifice of having children, I’m free to invest my time and money elsewhere while still having a society to live in. So it seems only fair that I should contribute towards some of the expenses that children entail. But that’s complicated. Libertarianism is simple, and I totally understand the appeal of that, b/c I hate politics. When I first encountered the libertarian philosophy, for awhile I thought I’d found the answer, and that’s a very powerful, very seductive feeling, and very difficult to give up once you’ve found it. Perhaps that’s why there’s so much overlap between libertarians, antivaxers, and woo-pushers (not to mention fundamentalist religious types) – they’re all looking for easy answers to hard questions.

On ideological influences of antivaccinationists, I think religion can’t be ignored: “Left-wing” antivaxxers correlate fairly strongly with Eastern, neopagan and/or “New Age” influences, while the “right wing” correlates predictably with conservative Christianity. It’s also my observation as an “insider” that “New Age” style ideas and practices seem to be making inroads in otherwise religiously conservative Christian groups.

Sarah A – that seems remarkably convoluted. Why not just say that you have a libertarian view of procreation (i.e. a person may have as many or few children as he/she/it pleases and can manage to support) while having a collectivist view of public education?

Why would anyone have the responsibility to procreate in the absence of, say, a post-apocalyptic dystopia?

Why not just say that you have a libertarian view of procreation (i.e. a person may have as many or few children as he/she/it pleases and can manage to support) while having a collectivist view of public education?

Because I have no idea what that means ^-^* Seriously, that long-winded explanation wasn’t some disguised political opinion, that’s just exactly how convoluted politics seems to me.

On the plus side, this thread has reminded me of my long-standing intention to educate myself about politics, which in turn has led me to discover that there is, in fact, a “Politics for Dummies,” which I shall be reading forthwith.

Learn that before commenting that we need all of these vaccines pushed at us. For instance, research, the people most likely to develop whooping cough are those who received the vaccine.

Pick me! Pick me! I can respond to this one!

Like my sister, who hadn’t received her booster shot for WC, who called me as she’d been diagnosed with it. Needed to inform me as I’d been visiting her. But I’d had the booster, and I, and my niece and nephew who are under 12, and therefore still under the protection of their first shot, have not developed it.

So, as my story has 4 people, and yours only 1, I win. That’s how it works, right?

imr90: There is a long tradition of societies coping with infectious disease by quarantining infected individuals.

It’d be interesting to look at the long quarantines of 1918-1919, and see what effect they had on the local economy. I’d be willing to bet that the economies experienced a huge slowdown.

@ PGP:

Actually there were downturns 1919-1920( see Post WWI recession, Depression of 1920- wikipedia) but I don’t know how much quarantines had to do with either one because the war’s end may have been the greatest contributing factor.

Still, I imagine it wasn’t neglible – even events like bad weather can affect local economies.

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