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Catholic doctors and priests versus the tetanus vaccine in Kenya

KenyaVaccine

Of the many lies and myths about vaccines that stubbornly persist despite all evidence showing them not only to be untrue but to be risibly, pseudoscientifically untrue, among whose number are myths that vaccines cause autism, sudden infant death syndrome, and a syndrome that so resembles shaken baby syndrome (more correctly called abusive head trauma) that shaken baby syndrome is a misdiagnosis for vaccine injury, the lie that vaccines are being used for population control is one of the most persistent. In this myth, vaccines are not designed to protect the populations of impoverished nations against diseases like the measles, which still kills hundreds of thousands of people a year outside of developed countries. Oh, no. Rather, according to this myth, vaccines are in fact a surreptitious instrument of population control designed to render people sterile.

You might recall how a few years ago antivaccinationists leaped on a statement by Bill Gates that “if we do a really great job on new vaccines, health care, reproductive health services, we could lower that [population] by perhaps 10 or 15 percent.” They used it to accuse Gates of being a eugenicist and that vaccines were in actuality an instrument of global depopulation. It was a ridiculous charge of course. In context, it was clear that Gates was referring to how the expected population increase from 6.8 billion to 9 billion could be blunted with good health care; in other words, he was referring to how good health care could decrease the rate of population growth, not how vaccines could be used to depopulate the world. However, because of the prevalence of the myth that vaccines are sterilizing agents intended for global depopulation, the charge that Gates is a eugenicist, as batshit nuts as it obviously is to reasonable people, resonated in the anti-science world of antivaccinationists. Similar claims, namely that there is “something” in vaccines that results in infertility and sterilization, have been unfortunately very effective in frightening people in Third World countries and have played a major role in antivaccine campaigns that have delayed the eradication of polio.

Of late, there’s been a new variant of this particularly pernicious lie going around the usual social media sources. Naturally, the first place I saw this story was on the site of über-quack and conspiracy theorist Mike Adams, who proclaimed in his usual hyperbole-filled way vaccine Tetanus vaccines found spiked with sterilization chemical to carry out race-based genocide against Africans:

Tetanus vaccines given to millions of young women in Kenya have been confirmed by laboratories to contain a sterilization chemical that causes miscarriages, reports the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association, a pro-vaccine organization.

A whopping 2.3 million young girls and women are in the process of being given the vaccine, pushed by UNICEF and the World Health Organization.

“We sent six samples from around Kenya to laboratories in South Africa. They tested positive for the HCG antigen,” Dr. Muhame Ngare of the Mercy Medical Centre in Nairobi told LifeSiteNews. “They were all laced with HCG.”

Here we go again. Elsewhere, the ever-quacky John Rappaport has also flogged this nonsense in a story called Depopulation vaccine in Kenya and beyond:

“Dr. Ngare, spokesman for the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association, stated in a bulletin released November 4, “This proved right our worst fears; that this WHO campaign is not about eradicating neonatal tetanus but a well-coordinated forceful population control mass sterilization exercise using a proven fertility regulating vaccine. This evidence was presented to the Ministry of Health before the third round of immunization but was ignored.”

(“Mass Sterilization: Kenyan Doctors Find Anti-Fertility Agent in UN Tetanus Vaccine,” November 8, 2014, by Steve Weatherbe, earth-heal.com)

You have to understand that every promoted so-called “pandemic” is an extended sales pitch for vaccines.

And not just a vaccine against the “killer germ” of the moment. We’re talking about a psyop to condition the population to vaccines in general.

There is much available literature on vaccines used for depopulation experiments. The research is ongoing. Undoubtedly, we only know a fraction of what is happening behind closed laboratory doors.

So this is the basic outline of the story. This group, the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association (KCDA), has claimed to have tested several vials of tetanus vaccine. Why did the KCDA test these vaccines? Who knows? Actually, for some reason, due to the persistence of the common myth that vaccines are being used for sterilization and depopulation, this group of doctors apparently felt obligated to test this vaccine. Interestingly, when I Googled “Kenya Catholic Doctors Association,” despite scrolling down many pages, I didn’t find any website or anything other than stories about this group’s escapades with respect to the tetanus vaccine in Kenya. It’s hard for me not to wonder if this group is real or just some faux group designed to stir up fear, uncertainty, and doubt about the vaccine. I suppose it’s probably real, given its association with the Catholic Church, but it is very odd that the only mentions of this group seem to be in connection with this particular manufactroversy. On the other hand, I have neither the time nor the inclination to keep delving deeper and deeper into Google searches until I find something.

Before you can understand the why the claim that hCG is in the tetanus vaccine would produce fear that the vaccine is in reality a sterilization agent, you need to know about a previous experimental vaccine. hCG is what is commonly referred to as the “pregnancy hormone.” Pregnancy tests are based on detecting hCG, which can first be detected about 11 days after conception and whose levels rise rapidly thereafter, peaking in the first 8-11 weeks of pregnancy. In the past, attempts have been made to produce a vaccine that targets hCG and thus results in the inability to conceive a child. It is a technique that falls under the category of immunocontraception. It takes little more than a quick trip to Wikipedia (among other sources) to learn that as far back as the 1970s, hCG was conjugated to tetanus toxoid in order to make a vaccine against hCG, because hCG itself did not provoke enough of an immune response. It’s not necessary to know all the details and history. From the 1970s on, there have been clinical trials of such vaccine contraceptives using hCG, and it is possible to prevent pregnancy by this approach, although antibody response against hCG declines with time.

This brings us back to the claims being made, described in an editorial by the Catholic Church in Kenya that appeared in Kenya Today. According to this article, the WHO had embarked on a vaccination program against tetanus that somehow had aroused the ire and suspicion of the Catholic Church because it was aimed at girls and women. The reason, of course, is because in Kenya there is a high risk of acquiring tetanus during childbirth, but the Catholic Church saw more nefarious motives:

Our concern and the subject of this discussion is the WHO/UNICEF sponsored tetanus immunization campaign launched last year in October ostensibly to eradicate neonatal tetanus. It is targeted at girls and women between the ages of 14 – 49 (child bearing age) and in 60 specific districts spread all around the country. The tetanus vaccine being used in this campaign has been imported into the country specifically for this purpose and bears a different batch number from the regular TT. So far, 3 doses have been given – the first in October 2013, the second in March 2014 and the third in October 2014. It is highly possible that there are two more doses to go.

Unlike other mass vaccination exercise, this particular WHO/UNICEF organized and sponsored tetanus vaccination campaign was launched at the New Stanley Hotel in Nairobi which is extremely unusual for a public campaign. For this reason, many people, including health professional did not know about the campaign until the matter was addressed by the Catholic Bishops.

This led to:

With the help of Catholic faithful’s who put their own lives at risk, the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association managed to access the tetanus vaccine used during the WHO/UNICEF immunization campaign in March 2014 and subjected them to testing. The unfortunate truth is that the vaccine was laced with HCG just like the one used in the South American cases! Further, none of the girls and women given the vaccination were informed of its contraceptive effect.

This proved right our worst fears; that this WHO/UNICEF campaign is not about eradicating neonatal tetanus but is a well-coordinated, forceful, population control, mass sterilization exercise using a proven fertility regulating vaccine.

Sounds like a lot of cloak and dagger just to get their hands on some tetanus vaccine. Much is made of the reluctance of WHO/UNICEF to provide the Catholic Church with vials of vaccine to test, but given the unreliability and dissembling demonstrated by the KCDA, it’s not hard to imagine why the WHO would not want to provide vials of vaccine for these cranks to test. Moreover, every vial wasted in this process would be one less potentially life-saving vial that could be administered to a Kenyan. In any case, somehow the KCDA obtained vials to test. It’s not clear how they got them or even whether they actually did get the,, but they claim to have gotten six vials. The test they subjected them to appears to be the same test used to measure hCG in blood samples for pregnancy tests. If one takes Dr. Muhame Ngare’s story at face value, it sure sounds damning. The Kenyan government is even launching an investigation.

There’s just one problem.

The WHO has investigated already and found nothing wrong. Ngare’s claims are, to put it bluntly, a huge stinking pile of fetid dingo’s kidneys. For one thing, no negative controls were provided, leading the WHO to speculate that the very low measurements. In any case, even if real, the levels of hCG reported by the KCDA are far too low to be an effective immunocontraceptive:

Additionally, the findings of the laboratory tests purported to be from a woman called St. Michael (explained below) all come out with normal values from the reference values assuming that the woman is not pregnant. The highest level of the β-HCG hormone was found to be 1.12 mIU/ml (and 1.2 mIU/ml for S-Quantitative β-HCG). There was no control used (or presented) and it would have been interesting to see what the result will be with tap water. There is a situation where ant- β-HCG antibodies can be produced by the body and that can act as a contraceptive, however, this requires the administration of at-least 100 to 500 micrograms of HCG bound to tetanus vaccine (about 11,904,000 to 59,520,000 mIU/ml of the same hormone where currently less than 1 mIU-ml has been reported from the lab results.

It’s also been noted that these values might have been the results of a reaction between the preservatives in a standard tetanus toxoid vaccine and a serum/urine HCG test kit. They are too low to be considered a significant threat when compared to the millions of times. Also, the vaccine in which hCG was linked to the tetanus toxoid is 20 years out of date. Indeed, in an e-mail interview, the original scientist who developed the hCG-tetanus toxoid vaccine even said that a different carrier, LTB, has been used, to avoid the very misinformation that has been associated with the valuable tetanus vaccination.

In other words, there’s no evidence to support the claims of the KCDA, and they aren’t even plausible, given what is known about the history of vaccines using hCG coupled to tetanus toxoid. Quite simply, such vaccines are history, long abandoned. The Catholic Church and the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association are engaging in fear mongering. For all the bloviation coming from the KCDA and Catholic Church in Kenya about how “evil” the alleged “mass depopulation” campaign of the WHO is, I’d say they are engaging in evil. They are intentionally frightening women in Kenya from taking the full course of tetanus vaccine. They might believe they are doing good, but they are engaging in activity that will lead to the death of Kenyan newborns.

None of this, of course, has stopped Mike Adams from proclaiming this “vaccination genocide and “medical crimes against humanity”:

What is happening in Kenya is a crime against humanity, and it is a crime committed with deliberate racial discrimination. Normally, the liberal media in the United States would be all over a story involving racial discrimination and genocide — or even a single police shooting of a black teenager — but because this genocide is being committed with vaccines, the entire mainstream media excuses it. Apparently, medical crimes against black people are perfectly acceptable to the liberal media as long as vaccines are used as the weapon.

As this story clearly demonstrates, “vaccine violence” is very real in our world.

No, what this story clearly demonstrates is how utterly loony people making these claims are. If you doubt me, just take a look at some of Adams’ other claims, namely that there are five vectors for what he calls the “science-based genocidal assault on humanity”:

  1. Vaccines
  2. Viruses
  3. Food
  4. Water
  5. Chemtrails (i.e. atmospheric deployment of chemicals)

Chemtrails? Yes, chemtrails. If you want any further evidence of just how far gone the cranks who argue that the tetanus vaccination program in Kenya is a racist depopulation program, look no further.

Lest you think that this obsession over vaccination as a cause of infertility is limited to Kenya and other Third World countries, consider this. The very same theme frequently appears in antivaccine rants against Gardasil, which has been blamed without evidence for premature ovarian failure. Another favorite antivaccine trope is that polysorbate-80, which is used in some vaccines, causes infertility. Yes, we in the “advanced” First World nations are as prone to falling for these lies as Kenyans. Never forget that.

Also, never forget just how far antivaccine liars and quacks will go to demonize the object of their hatred: Vaccines.

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]

221 replies on “Catholic doctors and priests versus the tetanus vaccine in Kenya”

Orac, I have to take issue with:

The Catholic Church and the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association are engaging in fear mongering

I read that article you linked to. It was written by someone for the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association. It doesn’t look as if the Catholic Church has anything to do with it.

“It is targeted at girls and women between the ages of 14 – 49 (child bearing age) and in 60 specific districts spread all around the country.”

One would suppose, if one were rational — which I guess leaves these guys out — that an epidemic of female infertility in just “60 specific districts”, the same sixty chosen for the vaccination campaign, would tend to tip people off about the effect of the vaccine.

The anti vaccine loons over on Mothering are losing their collective minds over this, of course.

http://www.mothering.com/forum/443-i-m-not-vaccinating/1463562-update-tetanus-vaccination-program-kenya.html

“They just need to come clean about the program. “Yes, we are trying to lower the population. It is for the benefit for humanity though, since the world cannot handle a larger human population. If we don’t do something to stop it now, the problem of an overpopulated planet would be much worse. Since people won’t voluntarily participate (as in one child policies or not having more children), we must use preventative measures. Hey–at least we are not surgically sterilizing people like we used to in the USA!”

I have been following this for a number of days. Along the way, I found

http://www.who.int/immunization/monitoring_surveillance/resources/milstien.pdf

Milstien J., Griffin PD, and Lee JW, Damage to Immunization Programmes from Misinformation on Contraceptive Vaccines, Reproductive Health Matters, No. 6, 1995.

Precis: a disinformation campaign, apparently lead by Human Life International (a US-based anti-contraception group) made claims that the maternal tetanus vaccines were “laced” with hCG hormones. These claims were circulated in the form of a press release, written by Fr. Matthew Habiger, and circulated in over 60 countries. The press release had talking points identical to those made by the Kenyan bishops in their letter of November 6 2014.

Message of the Kenyan Catholic Bishops, November 6, 2014

http://www.dioceseofkitui.org/component/content/article/2-uncategorised/111-kutui-nairobi-dinner

2. The Tetanus Vaccine
Dear Kenyans, due to the direction the debate on the ongoing Tetanus Vaccine campaign in Kenya is taking, We, the Catholic Bishops, in fulfilling our prophetic role, wish to restate our position as follows:

The Catholic Church is NOT opposed to regular vaccines administered in Kenya, both in our own Church health facilities and in public health institutions.

However, during the second phase of the Tetanus vaccination campaign in March 2014, that is sponsored by WHO/UNICEF, the Catholic Church questioned the secrecy of the exercise. We raised questions on whether the tetanus vaccine was linked to a population control program that has been reported in some countries, where a similar vaccine was laced with Beta- HCG hormone which causes infertility and multiple miscarriages in women.

On March 26, 2014 and October 13, 2014, we met the Cabinet Secretary in-charge of health and the Director of Medical Services among others and rasied our concerns about the Vaccine and agreed to jointly test the vaccine. However the ministry did not cooperate and the joint tests were not done.

The Catholic Church struggled and acquired several vials of the vaccine, which we sent to Four unrelated Government and private laboratories in Kenya and abroad.

We want to announce here, that all the tests showed that the vaccine used in Kenya in March and October 2014 was indeed laced with the Beta- HCG hormone.

On 13th of October 2014, the Catholic Church gave copies of the results to the cabinet secretary and the Director of Medical Services. The same was emailed to the Director of Medical Services on October 17, 2014.

Based on the above grounds, We, the Catholic Bishops in Kenya, wish to State the following:

*That we are shocked at the level of dishonesty and casual manner in which such a serious issue is being handled by the Government.
*That a report presented to the Parliamentary Committee on Health November 4, 2014 by the Ministry of Health, claiming that the Government had tested the Vaccine and found it clean of Beta- HCG hormone, is false and a deliberate attempt to distort the truth and mislead 42 million Kenyans.
*That we are dismayed by attempts to intimidate and blackmail medical professionals who have corroborated information about the vaccine, with threats of disciplinary action. We commend and support all professionals who have stood by the truth.

That we shall not waver in calling upon all Kenyans to avoid the tetanus vaccination campaign laced with Beta-HCG, because we are convinced that it is indeed a disguised population control programme.

May the Lord guide you and keep you safe now and forever more.

November 6th , 2014

Signed

His Eminence John Cardinal Njue

Chairman-Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops

Rt. Rev. Philip Anyolo Vice Chairman (KCCB)Homa Bay
Most Rev. Zacchaeus OkothKisumu
Most Rev. Peter Kairo Nyeri
Rt. Rev. Philip Sulumeti Kakamega
Rt. Rev. Paul Darmanin Garissa
Rt. Rev. Cornelius K. Arap Korir Eldoret
Rt. Rev. Joseph Mairura Okemwa Kisii
Rt. Rev. Alfred Rotich Military Ordinariate
Rt. Rev. Maurice Crowley Kitale
Rt. Rev. Norman Wambua King’oo Bungoma
Rt. Rev. Peter Kihara, IMC Marsabit
Rt. Rev. David Kamau Ng’ang’a – Aux. Bishop Nairobi
Rt. Rev. Anthony Ireri Mukobo, IMC Isiolo Vicariate
Rt. Rev. Virgilio Pante Maralal
Rt. Rev. Salesius Mugambi Meru
Rt. Rev. Emmanuel Okombo Kericho
Rt. Rev. Martin Kivuva Musonde Machakos
Rt. Rev. Anthony Muheria Kitui
Rt. Rev. James Maria Wainaina Muranga
Rt. Rev. Paul Kariuki Njiru Embu
Rt. Rev. Maurice Muhatia Makumba Nakuru
Rt. Rev. Dominic Kimengich Lodwar
Rt. Rev. Emmanuel Barbara Malindi Apostolic Administrator Mombasa
Rt. Rev. Joseph Mbatia Nyahururu
Rt. Rev. John Oballa Owaa Ngong
Rt. Rev. Joseph Allesandro Co-adjutor Garrisa

By Genevieve H. at Rational Catholic:

http://rationalcatholicblog.wordpress.com/2014/11/12/does-the-kenyan-unicef-tetanus-vaccine-contain-hcg-and-make-women-infertile/

…there are some reasons that I am very skeptical that what has been claimed by the bishops in Africa has happened, or even could happen. Looking at the claims made, only a few options seem possible.
1. Instead of a standard tetanus toxoid (TT) vaccine, an actual infertility vaccine was administered, rendering women infertile. This would either be the result of a specific eugenics program or a clinical trial where informed consent was not obtained from the women in question.

2. A tetanus toxoid vaccine that was contaminated with HCG was administered, rendering women infertile but no one knew or cared whether the vaccines were contaminated.

3. The test results that the bishops and doctors of Kenya are discussion are actually false positives, and there is no effect on fertility of the women who received these vaccines.

Discussion ensues, including a comment from a spokesperson for Human Life International.

Unfortunately, I watched Mikey’s nearly 15 minute long video:
he repeats the same nonsense as in the article HOWEVER he does so with a blank but disturbed look of desperation-
now that the public is less terrified of impending Ebola outbreaks, he needs something else to rile up his adherents. By the look of his numbers, he gets more with this article than with the others he wrote over the past few days.

Here’s the March 26 2014 Press Statement from the Conference of Kenyan Catholic Bishops. Note how similar the talking points are to the press release distributed by Human Life International in 1995:
http://www.kccb.or.ke/home/com/statements-com/press-statement-by-the-catholic-health-commission-of-kenya-kenya-conference-of-catholic-bishops-on-the-ongoing-national-tetanus-vaccination-campaign-in-60-districts-in-kenya/

We follow up on the recent questions raised by the Chairman of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops, His Eminence John Cardinal Njue and therefore seek answers to the following:

Is there a tetanus crisis on women of child-bearing age in Kenya? If this is so, why has it not been declared?
Why does the campaign target women of 14 – 49years?
Why has the campaign left out young girls, boys and men even if they are all prone to tetanus?
In the midst of so many life-threatening diseases in Kenya, why has tetanus been prioritized?

Information in the public domain indicates that Tetanus Toxoid vaccine (TT) laced with Beta human chorionic gonadotropin (b-HCG) sub unit has been used in Philippines, Nicaragua and Mexico to vaccinate women against future pregnancy. Beta HCG sub unit is a hormone necessary for pregnancy.

When injected as a vaccine to a non-pregnant woman, this Beta HCG sub unit combined with tetanus toxoid develops antibodies against tetanus and HCG so that if a woman’s egg becomes fertilized, her own natural HCG will be destroyed rendering her permanently infertile. In this situation tetanus vaccination has been used as a birth control method.

The ongoing tetanus vaccination campaign bears the hallmarks of the programmes that were carried out in Philippines, Mexico and Nicaragua. We are not certain that the vaccines being administered in Kenya are free of this hormone.

The Catholic Church acknowledges that maternal and neonatal care is imperative in prevention of death; the Church therefore maintains that adequate and clear information is provided to the general public to avoid misinformation and propaganda in regard to the vaccine. The sanctity of Life and the dignity of the human person must always be priorities in health care and the Catholic Church, in the absence of proper and adequate information will not shy away; from raising moral questions on matters affecting human life.

Rt. Rev. Paul Kariuki Njiru Chairman, Catholic Health Commission of Kenya – KCCB

Rt. Rev. Joseph Mbatia Vice Chairman, Catholic Health Commission of Kenya – KCCB

Oh, Mikey keeps repeating that -because vaccination target women and Africans it is both racist and sexist.

He’ll say anything to get numbers.

I saw this referenced in a totally unrelated comment thread and was baffled; now I know where the claim is coming from and understand.

And they call themselves *Catholics*, these supposed bishops who want to stir up fear of one of the most important interventions to protect newborn babies in Africa. Neonatal tetanus is no joke. Or should we take this as one of those instances where they care about conception but not about the life of the child once it has been born? (We can’t have sterility, but it’s okay if they die of tetanus!)

Say the Bishops:

May the Lord guide you and keep you safe now and forever more”.

Says me: “May you burn in hellfire for eternity, you disease-mongering scum”

Full statement of Dr. Muhame Ngare: http://tinyurl.com/nkj9766
Full statement of Kenyan Bishops: http://tinyurl.com/loz4ro4

The KCDA appears to be an actual organization. Whether it exists outside the official Church hierarchy, or is affiliated with the Church, is not stated anywhere I could find, but it appears KCDA has the Bishops’ ears: “the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association brought the matter to the attention of the Bishops and together sort audience with the Ministry of Health…”

The “together” suggests two separate entities working together, But Ngare says, “With great difficulty, the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association managed to access the tetanus vaccine used during the WHO immunization campaign in March 2014 and subjected them to testing. The Bishops say, “The Catholic Church struggled and acquired several vials of the vaccine, which we sent to Four unrelated Government and private laboratories in Kenya and abroad.” This would suggest KDCA IS an arm of the Church.

Seekinf further enlightenment, I checked the Nairobi newspapers. It seems Muhame Ngare is a spokesperson of convenience, as the head of the KDCA, and the driving force behind the anti-tetanus-vaccine campaign is a Dr. Stephen Karanja. Kenyan Health officials are unhappy with Karanja and have called for him to be summoned before Kenya’s Medical Practitioners Board for disciplinary action on the basis that his promotion of vaccine conspiracy theory is a breach of professional ethics. http://tinyurl.com/kukeja9

Karanja has been in the news before. As the AIDS crisis unfolded in Kenya, the Kenyan Catholic Church remained adamant that condom use was sinful, and promoted the idea that condoms do not HIV infection. “Latex rubber from which condoms are made does have pores through which viral sized particles can squeeze through during intercourse.” This became widely accepted among the Kenyan populace. In 1996 Cardinal Otunga, the highest ranking Catholic in the country, led a symbolic burning of condoms and safe sex literature. Karanja participated, and told the BBC, “It was a condom bonfire. I was there. I have to be there. I lead by example. We had a symbolic burning of the evil that is the condom.” http://tinyurl.com/2jt2wv

In 2008, Karanja attacked the election of Barack Obama;

This administration of Obama, is going to be a nightmare for our people. We in Kenya know him as a person who is anti-family. A person who would support abortion. Now we are in big trouble because of these Americans. They have no business electing a person who is going to destroy our countries. The truth is that they have put a bad man in the most powerful office in the whole world. And are putting people outside your borders in danger.

Karanja claimed Africa had been ‘saturated’ with contraceptives by US-based international aid organizations, promoting the “abomination” of abortion (and condoms).

The “one thing” that many Kenyans fear from Obama’s presidency, said Karanja, is the renewal of the attacks on the family and the unborn. “The only resource we have that is truly ours,” he said, “is our people. http://tinyurl.com/o3nvwva

Kenyan news coverage of the tetanus shot issue:
http://tinyurl.com/olvloje
http://www.the-star.co.ke/search/node/tetanus
http://tinyurl.com/ndcrqnu

I must note that Catholic diocese in different parts of the world are not all so extremist, and even in Kenya many Catholics do not follow the strict line of the Church. But the leadership? I learned at pub quiz the other night that the Vatican did not officially accept the heliocentric model of the solar system until 1993, when John Paul II formally acquitted Gallileo, and accepted the validity of his work.

Speaking of population control…

From The Guardian 8/21/14. Old story but news to me:

Richard Dawkins has become embroiled in another Twitter row, claiming it would be “immoral” to carry on with a pregnancy if the mother knew the foetus had Down’s syndrome. Dawkins later defended his view, saying he would not apologise “for approaching moral philosophic questions in a logical way”.

I wonder how RD’s “logic” approaches the moral philosophic questions of autism, and parents who euthanize their ASD children?

Orac, how did you get the test results? I have been following this story as possible since a friend tipped me off to it on Facebook. My first questions were why the Bishops did not release the lot numbers, laboratory names and full test results?
The Catholic Bishops may be well intended but I get the impression there are anti first world feelings and false medical information being given to them.

If there was an contraceptive vaccine I would think plenty of first world women would want it or be willing to take part in the trials. Secret 3rd world testing would not be needed.

Of course the Church, from which I am a deconvert despite 13 years of parochial schooling, would be opposed to a vaccination program.

When children stop dying young or in childbirth, women have fewer children. That means fewer tithes if they do survive into adulthood and fewer pure young souls for Heaven if they don’t.

I picked this up off a link from RatCat. The biggest problem I have with blogs like this is that they don’t come across as objective or even aware of a need for professionalism, ie. full of name calling and assumptions about the people simply reporting the story. It actually makes your claims seem as if they aren’t credible and your motives seem wrong. And the comment section is the same thing. If you have expertise, by all means offer it up. But the obnoxiousness and arrogance only feeds the sense of mistrust that has developed and further alienates people. It’s pretty dumb.

The level of entitlement radiating from those authoritarian theocrat wannabees is extraordinary.

The Catholic Church has not been engaged as members and participants of the Health Sector Coordinating Committee and in the respective Technical Working Group.

OUTRAGE!

A.H. @19:

The biggest problem I have with blogs like this is that they don’t come across as objective or even aware of a need for professionalism, ie. full of name calling and assumptions about the people simply reporting the story.

You seldom see Tone Trolling in such a pure form, so completely unrelated to the specific thread, or indeed to the blog itself.

Oh, how I wished that vaccination was a one-stop shop. Instead, I have to go in for one appointment to get my vaccines, and another for the Magic Stick under my arm to keep me from getting pregnant. It’s a conspiracy, I tell you! Why can’t the evil pharma-industrial complex take care of it all with one shot?

On a more sober note, the Catholics don’t like condoms for AIDS control in Africa, either. What is wrong with these people?

Tone Trolling or not. I am interested in the story and interested in understanding the facts. I’ve seen enough vaccine blogs and comment sections when researching other topics to know that the name calling is creating its own epidemic. Who wants to listen to anyone that can’t manage basic respect? And who is going to take seriously anyone who has no awareness of professionalism. It happens on many blogs and it is a shame.

If your delicate eyes can’t standing reading a little bit of harsh criticism that the Kenyan Catholic hierarchy deserves for peddling this dangerous and potentially deadly myth about the tetanus vaccine, there are plenty of other blogs around. In some cases, anger and outrage are quite justified. This, I believe, is one such time. If you want dispassionate, read the WHO rebuttal I linked to. I rarely do dispassionate on topics like this.

It’s rather interesting to me that you are clutching your pearls so tightly over a relatively little harsh language about how the claim that the tetanus vaccine is being used for depopulation is a “pernicious lie” and the main people promoting this story outside of Kenya are quacks (which Mike Adams undeniably is), but seem untroubled by what the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association and Kenyan Catholic bishops are doing. That doesn’t even consider Adams’ labeling the tetanus vaccination program as “racist genocide.”

Methinks your righteous indignation is misplaced.

name calling and assumptions about the people simply reporting the story.

Who are these “people simply reporting the story” who are receiving “name calling and assumptions”? The cranks using terms like race-based genocide and Depopulation vaccine — is that your idea of “simple reportage”?

I see some harsh words directed at Mike Adams, whose bad faith and exploit-anything-for-money mendacity are not “assumptions” but are documented within the post.

Thanks Orac. Not wearing or clutching pearls, and while my ears can certainly take the harsh criticism, my point is that it makes your argument seem less credible. Not sure why this link was included over at Rat Cat but I certainly am aware that there are other blogs. If you just enjoy being snarky for the fun of it, well alrighty then. However, I’m just pointing out that you may have other visitors, like myself, trying to find information on this story, who will immediately wonder why they should believe your take on this, given all the snark. Just sayin.

The biggest problem I have with blogs like this is that they don’t come across as objective or even aware of a need for professionalism, ie. full of name calling and assumptions about the people simply reporting the story

AH< we're talking about a story promoted by Mike Adams. There’s no need to assume anything about his lack of credibility or his personal agenda-driven motivation to popularize this story: they’re a matter of public record (he’s entry #1 in the Encyclopedia of American Loons, for dog’s sake).

Also, I’m not familiar with Mike Adams but the characterizations also seem to be applied to Catholics, Kenya’s Bishops, KCDA, unnamed “antivaccinationists”, I’ve probably missed someone. Granted, I can see questioning what any of these folks have said. That is perfectly legitimate. But since you probably don’t know all of the reasons why they are motivated to say what they have, it makes you seem ill willed, and possibly not trustworthy.

AH: ” Who wants to listen to anyone that can’t manage basic respect?”

Why should we respect anyone who makes fakes claims about tetanus vaccines in an area where about one infant per day dies from tetanus? From this report:

Tetanus is regarded as a big threat to babies in Kenya, with a new-born child dying every day of the infection.

According to Kenya’s health ministry, about 550 babies died of tetanus in Kenya last year.

But since you probably don’t know all of the reasons why they are motivated to say what they have, it makes you seem ill willed, and possibly not trustworthy.

How do you suppose nattering on about your personal dissatisfaction with the post while showing no sign whatever of having managed to extract any content from it makes you seem?

But since you probably don’t know all of the reasons why they are motivated to say what they have, it makes you seem ill willed, and possibly not trustworthy.

So it’s not enough to know that they”re spreading lies, we also have to know why they’re spreading lies before we can characterize them (accurately) as liars?

AH: “I’m not familiar with Mike Adams ”

There is little search box at the top of this page, perhaps you should read up on the “Health Ranger”, who would be more accurately called “Health Danger.” Especially after he called for the murder of certain scientists.

Seriously, you actually think we need to treat a computer spam vender turned supplement marketer with respect?

Why should we respect anyone who makes fakes claims about tetanus vaccines in an area where about one infant per day dies from tetanus?

Exactly. Respect is earned. So is disrespect, but obviously in a different way. These people have more than earned disrespect for what they are doing. I make no apologies for showing them disrespect in my posts because they do not even come close to deserving my respect, and I don’t care if my expressing that disrespect on my blog offends AH’s very delicate sensibilities.

Rejecting an argument based on tone alone, rather than facts and evidence (which is what AH is doing), is the very definition of what tone trolls do.

Obviously the people making the claims feel they have reason. That sad reality is that they may be completely wrong. But if you think that they are saying this because they are liars, cranks, idiots, Catholics, loons, people who should rot in hell etc. then I think you are completely wrong. Misinformation and mistrust abound. You have to care about both. Whether you like it or not.

I will now Godwin the thread because it is appropriate here as the “nuclear option” to show how silly your argument is.

Adolf Hitler thought he had very good “reason” for what he did. Should I show respect for Adolf Hitler because he thought that by exterminating European Jewry he was saving his people and helping them to fulfill their destiny? After all, he thought he was doing great good by destroying what he viewed as the implacable enemy of Germany.

Finally, I was raised Catholic. My entire family is still Catholic. I even still have a soft spot in my heart for Catholic ceremonies and culture, even though I’m long lapsed. If I get criticized for anything it tends to be for being too easy on the Catholic hierarchy.

In any case, consider this quote from my post above:

The Catholic Church and the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association are engaging in fear mongering. For all the bloviation coming from the KCDA and Catholic Church in Kenya about how “evil” the alleged “mass depopulation” campaign of the WHO is, I’d say they are engaging in evil. They are intentionally frightening women in Kenya from taking the full course of tetanus vaccine. They might believe they are doing good, but they are engaging in activity that will lead to the death of Kenyan women.

Yes, contrary to your claim, I did consider the motivation behind what the Catholic bishops and the KCDA are doing in Kenya.

Obviously the people making the claims feel they have reason.

Say what you like about scammers and grifters, at least scamming and grifting is an ethos a reason to spout mendacious claims!

“Obviously the people making the claims feel they have reason.”

Perhaps because they hate women, and any health initiative that prevents their suffering will be demonized by them.

To JGC @34
The point is they don’t think they can trust the WHO. And they don’t believe that they are telling a lie. So call them liars if you want, but they have a fear that they are being targeted. Now, cooler heads, have to sort through the conflicting information to understand what happened and what to do. I hope it gets straightened out quickly. Somehow, someway the issue of mistrust is going to have to be dealt with. It just is. It’s a big part of this story. Why people who love science think they can just ignore that part , is hard for me to understand.

But if you think that they are saying this because they are liars, cranks, idiots, Catholics, loons, people who should rot in hell etc. then I think you are completely wrong.

Again: why do you believe it matters that we identify why they’re saying what they’re saying? It’s enough that they’ve ade the statement to characterize them: if they’re saying things that are demonstrably false they’re liars, if they’re embracing and/or promoting ideas that are not rational they’re loons, etc.

The point is they don’t think they can trust the WHO.

So we’ve identified the reason they’re lying: do their lies then somehow become true statements?

And they don’t believe that they are telling a lie.

So they also aren’t aware they’re telling lies: do their lies then somehow become true statements?

So call them liars if you want, but they have a fear that they are being targeted.

Assigning motivation to their behavior does nothing to alter that behavior nor make it somehow acceptable.

Now, cooler heads, have to sort through the conflicting information to understand what happened and what to do. I hope it gets straightened out quickly.

It seems to me that if you want to straighten it out quickly you’d be arguing in support of an aggressive response to the spread of misinformation, rather than arguing we wait for ‘cooler heads’ to prevail.,

the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association, a pro-vaccine organization.

Needless to say, Mike Adams is lying here; the KCDA is not a pro-vaccine organization. It appears to be some sort of alt-health group set up with the imprimatur of Kenyan Catholicism, to convert medicine into a branch of religion (“I invite you, in the spirit of the Hippocratic Oath to rise, witness, and evangelize the medical and health care world”), stripped of any vestige of reproductive health (“anti-life principles”).

Well clearly I’d better go back to my pearl clutching. I’m obviously not rational enough or science-y enough to offer anything to the people who know everything already.

hdb (quoting the KCDA): “(“I invite you, in the spirit of the Hippocratic Oath to rise, witness, and evangelize the medical and health care world”), stripped of any vestige of reproductive health (“anti-life principles”).”

Yup, it is one of those women hating groups that thinks they should just make babies and suffer because they lack a Y-chromosome.

AH: “I’m obviously not rational enough or science-y enough to offer anything to the people who know everything already.”

Nor open minded enough to learn anything.

name calling and assumptions about the people simply reporting the story

I’m still wondering, who are these “simple reporters” of a story? Evidently not Dr. Muhame Ngare of the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association, who invented the story with his fraudulent test results.

hdb (quoting the KCDA)

No, that’s not quoting the KCDA, that’s “His Eminence Cardinal John Kjue”, on behalf of the Kenyan Episcopal Conference, conferring the blessing of Kenyan Catholicism upon the KCDA and its goal of dressing up dogma in a white coat.

Human Life International began promoting this falsehood — that the tetanus vaccine given to women is “laced” with HGC — in 1994-1995, as I mentioned in post #5.

The misinformation (to be generous) was thoroughly refuted in the document I referenced above,

http://www.who.int/immunization/monitoring_surveillance/resources/milstien.pdf

Milstien J., Griffin PD, and Lee JW, Damage to Immunization Programmes from Misinformation on Contraceptive Vaccines, Reproductive Health Matters, No. 6, 1995.

Nevertheless, HLI has continued to advance this information, with exactly the same talking points since then. In this instance, the Kenyan bishops and Dr Wahome Ngare, of the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association, has continued to advance this story, frightening many Kenyan girls and women away from the vaccine.

In this episode, MaterCare International

In the meantime, one (or many more) Kenyan infants continue to die in agony from neonatal tetanus.

Calli Arcale:
And they call themselves *Catholics*, these supposed bishops

Well they are bishops; they are Catholics; they’re the ones who determine whether someone else is catholic. I know they come across as a bunch of self-deluded sacredotal cosplayers dressing up in stolen cassocks and sounding like cartoonish stereotypes of superstitious theocratic scoundrels dreamed up by PJ Myers, but they are the official Catholic church in Kenya.

Trust really is the issue. I know it’s hard to convey the nuance of scientific results and explain how we know what we know, but there has to be someway to gain that trust.

This is an intriguing bit of immunological wisdom:

When tetanus is laced with HCG and administered in five doses every 6 months, the woman develops antibodies against both the tetanus and the HCG in 2 – 3 years after the last injection.

The funny thing is that the actual Talwar anti-hCG vaccine wears off in about 3 months (PDF).

ORAC the pharma paid doctor accuses others of lying about vaccines. Has ORAC written yet about Dr William Thompson, a 20 year CDC vaccine researcher who confessed to covering up how MERCK’S MMR caused an increase of autism (340%) in black children?

Dr Wahome Ngare is only the front being employed being employed by MaterCare (from whence all the U.S. woo-ists have taken the story) to keep quick fact-checkers off the trail of the actual KCDA honcho behind this campaign, Dr. Stephen Karanja. Theres are zero references to Ngare in the Kenyan press. Karanja is a condom-burning, Obama-demonizing loose canon (sic) facing possible disciplinary action by the Kenyan Health Board for promoting vaccine conspiracy theory. See post #15 above for details and links.

On the positive side, the comments threads in the Nairobi papers indicate well-educated Kenyans aren’t buying what Karanja and the Bishops are cooking. On the not-so-positive side, Kenya is full of impoverished folks without Web access, many of them illiterate and like the porous condom blather before it, the vaccine-sterilization scare is probably spreading like wildfire through the slums of Kibera and out to the poor townships.

Well, if it makes anybody’s little butthurtness feel any better then it may be worth remembering that the Catholic Church also quite assertively forbade herbalism once the very lucrative and proprietary ‘bloodletting’ came along…

AH you are right about one thing it does boil down to trust. But here’s the rub in that, you have organizations like WHO and CDC full of scientists who have dedicated their life’s work to advancing public health. They put in long hours, for low pay, fighting diseases most people in the first world have never heard about and could care less about if they did. Do they not deserve respect? On the other hand you have internet charlatans like Mike Adams making a comfortable profit selling green goo on the internet to the gullible by making wild claims about ‘toxins’. Who regularly demonizes vaccination and any other medical intervention as ‘evil’. You have the Catholic church of Kenya engaged in spreading lies and fear about an intervention to save the lives and health of women and their newborn infants. Why do they deserve so much more respect? Why is there such virulent hatred of science and reason? Such demonization of doctors, nurses, and scientists dedicating their careers to ending these diseases? Why should these naysayers get respect? Why can’t they be called out as liars? Can’t you see that by treating them with ‘respect’ as we used to do with the antivaccine nuts who would regularly appear on TV to tell ‘both sides’ of the story we just continue this charade that there is some kind of controversy? These idiots should be shouted down immediately and in no uncertain terms that they are not rational and not based in science. Being ‘respectful’ just gives them their 15 minutes of fame and results in lingering doubt over their wild claims.

I am totally confused by the test results that are being reported.
What, exactly, was tested. Some words (reference to error due to preservative) seem to suggest it was actual TT vaccine that was tested, yet other things (purported to be from a woman called St. Michael ,,, normal values from the reference values assuming that the woman is not pregnant. ) seem to be saying it was some sort of sample(s) (urine? blood?) from a woman (who had been vaccinated?).

To [email protected]
I don’t know much of anything about Mike Adams, only what I’ve read here, but based on that I’m guessing he has very little influence with anyone in Kenya. As for the Bishops and others actually in Kenya I know that they report mistrust of and corruption in their government and of certain Govt programs. I know that they also report being pressured by foreign groups on any number of issues, some moral issues. You can imagine how the situation might blow up if people in Kenya, who already feel they can’t trust what their govt is doing, think they are being blown off, disrespected etc. Imagine if the Bishops were given bad information but not knowing that, they felt they were doing a good thing warning their people. I’ m just speculating. I don’t really know why they made that call. Since they are wary of WHO that issue needs to be addressed.

As for the Bishops and others actually in Kenya I know that they report mistrust of and corruption in their government and of certain Govt programs.

So they dislike the competition?

Imagine if the Bishops were given bad information but not knowing that, they felt they were doing a good thing warning their people.

But HLI, Cog4Life, etc., know it’s bad information, and they just keep serving it up.

Imagine if the Bishops were given bad information
They created the propaganda channel which is providing them with bad information. They own those lies.

I know that they report mistrust of […] their government and of certain Govt programs.
They are creating the mistrust. They are part of the feckin’ government — having managed to weasel their way in and take over delivery of some of the social and health services — but as happens when you let theocrats into the tent, they want more, and they want more power to impose their own dogma as a condition of the services.

Nothing yet from Pharyngula on the story. I am disappoint. PZ Myer’s turns of phrase would be far less snarky, far more to AH’s tastes.

Squirrelelite, If you listen to the whole Kenyan television interview I posted at comment #9, the Kenyan health ministry estimates that for every neonatal tetanus death reported, there are about 20 that are not recorded. In Kenya, a poor country with a patchy health infrastructure, many births and deaths are not recorded.

The Kenyan tetanus immunization campaign of 2013-2014, which the Catholic bishops have effectively sabotaged, was focused on those districts with the least access to maternal care.

Orac: “They might believe they are doing good, but they are engaging in activity that will lead to the death of Kenyan women.”

Isn’t that the point though? Anything that makes a woman’s life more comfortable, like education, birth control and not dying is obviously going to make God unhappy. God isn’t happy unless women are miserable, and every single bishop, priest and pastor knows that.

PoliticalGuineaPig, I am a card-carrying atheist, and I find your pronouncement in the previous comment both ignorant and abhorrent.

Thanks, Liz!

I’ve been busy all day after checking this story early in the morning.
I tried to look up Kenya specific data from the WHO, but the results are very sparse. The WHO tetanus numbers for Kenya (and Zambia, which I compared it with) are unbelievably low.

It’s also been noted that these values might have been the results of a reaction between the preservatives in a standard tetanus toxoid vaccine and a serum/urine HCG test kit … Also, the vaccine in which hCG was linked to the tetanus toxoid is 20 years out of date … .

In other words, there’s no evidence to support the claims of the KCDA, and they aren’t even plausible, given what is known about the history of vaccines using hCG coupled to tetanus toxoid. Quite simply, such vaccines are history, long abandoned.

Yet it does seem to be a recurring, um, concern about ‘contamination’. From 2004:

Using WHO-recommended technologies like Gas Chromatography (GC) and Radio-Immuno assay, Dr. Kaita, upon analysis, found evidence of serious contamination. “Some of the things we discovered in the vaccines are harmful, toxic; some have direct effects on the human reproductive system,” he said in an interview with Kaduna’s Weekly Trust. “I and some other professional colleagues who are Indians who were in the Lab could not believe the discovery,”

I’d guess, Orac, that you’re debunking this {from the 20 year references}:

LifeSiteNews.com reported that in 1995, the Catholic Women’s League of the Philippines won a court order halting a UNICEF anti-tetanus program because the vaccine had been laced with B-hCG, which when given in a vaccine permanently causes women to be unable to sustain a pregnancy. The Supreme Court of the Philippines found the surreptitious sterilization program had already vaccinated three million women, aged 12 to 45. B-hCG-laced vaccine was also found in at least four other developing countries.

But, I’m still confused as *A whopping 2.3 million* is different from *three million* and *12 to 45* is different from *14 – 49*

https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/unicef-nigerian-polio-vaccine-contaminated-with-sterilizing-agents-scientis

At any rate, the UN can go stuff it over their ‘edicts’
http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/11/12/us-usa-drugs-un-idUSKCN0IW1GV20141112

I don’t recall any words to the effect of “”which it says requires states to limit the use of cannabis to medical and scientific purposes…”” In the Bush-authored 1961Single Convention Treaty — I *thought* that was the whole basis for the seemingly insurmountable federal (imposters)schedule I.

Just because I’m a numbers geek, I looked up some stats for Kenya and Zambia, where my aunt worked at a mission hospital.
Most of the numbers are %, but maternal mortality is per 100,000 births. GNI is in US dollars-equivalent.

It looks like the snows of Kilimanjaro are losing to Victoria Falls on all counts, especially maternal mortality.

Kenya Zambia
Unmet Fam Plan 29.7 22.3
Contaceptive Prev 22.5 28.1
Antenatal (1 visit) 89.5 94.4
Skilled births 47.7 53.6
Maternal Mortality 550 320
GNI (PPP) 1730 1590

Not sure what the Catholic % is in both countries (Mukinge Hospital is supported by an interdenominational Protestant group.), but if Archbishop Milingo is any indication, the Zambians don’t exactly line up right behind the Holy See.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emmanuel_Milingo

I guess I should have used dashes for spacing 🙁
I put in spaces to make a nice, neat table !?!??!

Anyways, I thought the whole ‘no birth control’ agenda of Catholics was to ensure the supraspontaneous generation of more Catholics — You know, as a political force…

It seems to me that *they* may just be that sincere in their concerns and flagellate each other if shown to be mistaken.

the Catholic Women’s League of the Philippines won a court order halting a UNICEF anti-tetanus program because the vaccine had been laced with B-hCG, which when given in a vaccine permanently causes women to be unable to sustain a pregnancy.

What would be nice here is some evidence that this court order ever existed, because the sole source of the claim seems to be a bunch of anti-contraception anti-vax liars.

AH, as a former credulous, alt-med, pseudoscience enthusiast, I can tell you that the kindest, gentlest science-based blog wouldn’t have changed my mind back in the day. At least I noticed the mockery and was suitably outraged by it. I speak on this subject from time to time and people ask me what would have changed my mind back then and I say “nothing.” Waking up to reason and reality is a process. It took ten years and a variety of stressors and lessons and three deaths to shake me out of my fear-based magical thinking. Your tone trolling is just about you. You, you, you. We’re a snarky, educated, funny, rude, and compassionate bunch here. Don’t come riding in here on your big, white horse, demanding that we change our culture because your way is so much better than ours. Go back to your people and tell them of the exotic land you visited and the lessons you learned. Just don’t tell them about our gold.

because the sole source of the claim seems to be a bunch of anti-contraception anti-vax liars

That would indeed seem very incongruous, herr doktor bimler. How does ‘anti-vax’ square with ‘anti-contraception’? Unless they honestly believe what they are claiming to be the truth — that vaccines may be cutting into their numbers??

Every Sperm Is Sacred

Has ORAC written yet about Dr William Thompson, a 20 year CDC vaccine researcher who confessed to covering up how MERCK’S MMR caused an increase of autism (340%) in black children?

Why yes, he has–extensively. Try typing “thompson” into the search window at the top right of this page to find out why the claims of a cover-up and increased risk of autism are false.

Has ORAC written yet about Dr William Thompson, a 20 year CDC vaccine researcher who confessed to covering up how MERCK’S MMR caused an increase of autism (340%) in black children?

You lose.

[email protected] 82. It’s lovely meeting you, I’d love to stop riding my big horse or whatever…huh? Any how. I’m making a comment. Apparently that’s what people do in comment sections. And apparently it’s pretty fun to get all worked up about “Tone trolling”. I guess it’s part of the fun for you guys and maybe you’re a tight knit little commenting bunch. As a visitor it seems helpful to read many of the comments and others, not so much. I just had the impression upon coming to this link that I would be dealing with helpful information. And I see it’s a mixed bag. As far as the author is concerned, I have know idea what his experience and credentials are with this subject matter so anything I read I have to evaluate at face value, not knowing anything about his background. And if he sounds like he’s full of vinegar it tends to not lend to his credibility. Furthermore I don’t remember demanding anyone had to do anything. Hope that helps.

pro-life groups said tests conducted on vaccine samples at the nuclear medicine department of the Makati Medical Center, a prestigious private hospital, revealed HCG levels as high as seven milli-international units per cubic centimeter

You can’t argue with seven milli-international units!

As far as the author is concerned, I have know idea what his experience and credentials are with this subject matter so anything I read I have to evaluate at face value, not knowing anything about his background.

I take it that nobody knows anything about your “background,” so if this is a refinement of your whining, all you seem to have genuinely advanced is a demand for a refund.

Liz:
PGP is certainly prone to overstatement, and does seem to categorize large groups by the worst actors inside the Venn diagram. I’m not sure she means her words to be taken literally — in this case “every single” in #73 and “all” in #74 — and so I’d suggest we take them figuratively. Or at least ASK if she really means “every single” and “all” before taking exception in the comments.

While you may indeed find the comments “abhorent” and even “ignorant”, if they disturb you, there may be better ways to get PGP to be more careful with her language than hauling out the heavy guns of high dudgeon. Phil Plait might have a few words of helpful advice (4 words, to be precise):

PGP: Plait might be talkin’ to you, too. You do know that a number of faiths (not many, but some) ordain women pastors, right? And you do know that Orthodox rabbis and Reform rabbis have very different views, right?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rachel_Adler

Did you know there are also agnostic rabbis?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sherwin_Wine

Humanistic Judaism is egalitarian with respect to gender and gender identification, Jewish status, and sexual orientation. Baby-naming ceremonies, similar for boys and girls, are used rather than the brit milah. Those who identify as Jews and those who do not, as well as LGBTI members, may participate in all ways in all Humanistic Jewish rituals and leadership roles. Humanistic Judaism ordains both men and women as rabbis, and its first rabbi was a woman, Tamara Kolton, ordained in 1999.

For bishops and imams, I got nothin’, but absence of evidence isn’t evidence of absence.

AH: “As far as the author is concerned, I have know idea what his experience and credentials are with this subject matter so anything I read I have to evaluate at face value, not knowing anything about his background.”

Have you tried to click on his name under the title of the article?

Officially, the Roman Catholic Church is pro-vaccine. They have an official policy statement about vaccines that were developed in aborted fetal cell lines, stating that they do not need to refuse those vaccines on a moral ground.

With over a billion Catholics in the world, you are bound to end up with some nutjobs, but that doesn’t mean that it reflects all Catholics worldwide.

What’s the point of God if people aren’t suffering?

PGP, I’m another card-carrying atheist, like Liz Ditz — but I know and respect many religious people. I don’t even know where to start with your comment. You know not of what you speak, I think.

AH — I don’t think you quite understand how foolish you look in this forum. There are many here with deep, deep expertise in medicine and science, who know exactly why the people they criticize are just as moronic and harmful as they say they are. You apparently have no idea.

One can’t help but note that apparently never occurred to AH that part of the whole pseudonym thing is because I want my arguments to be examined based on evidence and science, not based on my qualifications, which are actually quite extensive. At least, that’s how it started. Now, my ‘nym is about the worst kept secret in the blogosphere.

Maybe it would help him overcome his pearl clutching if he knew I am a surgeon and don’t suffer fools gladly or that I’m also a scientist who suffers quacks and pseudoscientists even less gladly. Or maybe not. I don’t really much care at this point. This blog is clearly not for him if this post, which isn’t even that harsh compared to some stuff I’ve written in the past, so gives him the fainting vapors and makes him doubt my qualifications because he perceives me as such a meanie, as if being nice were somehow indicative of competence at medicine and science. It’s not.

I’ll make it very clear. I am not objective. I never claimed to be. I am biased. That bias, as regular readers know, is in favor of science and against quackery, irrationality, and pseudoscience. (You should be biased against pseudoscience and for science as well.) I make no bones about it, and I don’t apologize for it. If AH wants something that “tells both sides” and lends equal respect to both sides, again, this is not the blog for him. It’s not going to change, at least not enough to make him happy.

Let’s just put it this way: Promotion of pseudoscience and/or outright fraud (such as the hCG measurements sure appear to be) really gets under my skin and complaints about my “incivility” coupled with no concerns about the much, much worse incivility of promoters of pseudoscience like this (such as Mike Adams, who is known for comparing scientists to Nazis and his describing his critics in apocalyptic terms denoting pure evil) do not inspire me to be try to be civil to the person making to the complaint.

It might surprise AH, but if someone shows up in here asking genuine questions about this or making reasonable criticisms based on the evidence presented, the reaction would not be hostile. I’ve dealt with many such criticisms, and my readers have respectfully dealt with many, many more, which I appreciate. (I don’t have time to respond to all the comments, and every comment I make here detracts from my time for writing new material.) Tone trolling, however, particularly over a post like this that isn’t even really that harsh relative to the offense being described, irritates me, because virtually without exception such tone trolls are sanctimonious and self-righteous. They give the impression that they think themselves so superior, so “above it all,” because they apparently value “respect” and “civility” above all else, leaving only contempt for those who don’t follow their rarified standards of “respect” and “civility.”

Hello Everyone,

everyone, look at that picture 🙂

That’s _one_ and one of the many hypothesis I have of the personality of peoples on this planet. put any personality extreme at the corner of this graph and that’s one of the many method how I assess and evaluate the one of the very, extremely few number of peoples of this planet (namely, the ones I encounter in my life). Now, if you AH don’t abide by this principle before I offered you that hypothesis, I don’t care but do know how you assess yourself as to how fucking much you’re being wrong and how you pull the wrong conclusion about the peoples here.

You may have an issue with the tone here but it’s pointless, you have to make effort as to how you take the message without being influenced by the tone here. Every human being has the right to be emotional about any issues which contradict their core code (which I assume that the most majority here have, but I might be wrong and if I’m wrong, I’ll reassess.)

Have you assessed how many of the population get emotional about any situations they encounter in their life? ask yourself the question because I know much better, having dealt with the extreme 5 sigma deviation peoples from the norm. I learnt from these peoples to discard any emotions the face from my logic (and only from my logic, I know how to deal with emotional peoples how to deal with their emotion) but I use my logic to address the root cause of a problem.

Does the tone bother you? if yes, do you think it’s that really of a big deal? part & parcel of being a professional is to seek for the main point without the flafla bothering you and in that regard, you need to develop a skin. There ain’t really no way how peoples are gonna react to a particular point and in that regard, if they are right, I’m okay with that, but if they are wrong (in the main point), it does absolutely nothing to me except lower my opinion and expectation of the peoples I encounter.

Have I said that I have a carbon fibre reinforced kevlar backbone with a few rods of titanium thrown in for good measure?….

Alain

The beautiful thing about science is that it doesn’t care if you believe in it or not, and through its use, one can affirm the truth or falsehood in a statement with language as gentle or harsh as they please.

In other words, the Kenyan bishops are full of shit, and are propagating dangerous lies. If memory holds, neither the Bible, Cathechism of the Catholic Church or 2 millennia of precedent in Canon Law tend to frown upon lying.

The Rational Catholic, ah yes, formerly known as The Vatican Compartmentalism Quarterly.
I know, I know. I’m a horrible person, but, it’s like waving a red flag in front of a bull . . .

1995, the Catholic Women’s League of the Philippines won a court order halting a UNICEF anti-tetanus program because the vaccine had been laced with B-hCG, which when given in a vaccine permanently causes women to be unable to sustain a pregnancy. The Supreme Court of the Philippines found the surreptitious sterilization program had already vaccinated three million women, aged 12 to 45. B-hCG-laced vaccine was also found in at least four other developing countries.
When the first reports surfaced in the Philippines of tetanus toxoid vaccine being laced with hCG hormones, the WHO and the Philippine Department of Health (DOH) immediately denied that the vaccine contained hCG. Confronted with the results of laboratory tests which detected its presence in three of the four vials of tetanus toxoid examined, the WHO and DOH scoffed at the evidence coming from “right-to-life and Catholic” sources. Four new vials of the tetanus vaccine were submitted by DOH to St. Luke’s (Lutheran) Medical Center in Manila — and all four vials tested positive for hCG.

From outright denial the stories now shifted to the allegedly “insignificant” quantity of the hCG present; the volume of hCG present is insufficient to produce anti-hCG antibodies. But new tests designed to detect the presence of hCG antibodies in the blood sera of women vaccinated with the tetanus toxoid vaccine were undertaken. Of thirty women tested subsequent to receiving tetanus toxoid vaccine, twenty-six tested positive for high levels of anti-hCG. If there were no hCG in the vaccine, or if it were present in only “insignificant” quantities, why were the vaccinated women found to be harboring anti-hCG antibodies? The WHO and the DOH had no answers.

“Clinical profile and Toxicology Studies on Four Women Immunized with Pr-B-hCG-TT,” Contraception, February, 1976, pp. 253-268.

“Observations on the antigenicity and clinical effects of a candidate antipregnancy vaccine: B-subunit of human chorionic gonadotropin linked to tetanus toxoid,” Fertility and Sterility, October 1980, pp. 328-335.

“Phase 1 Clinical Trials of a World Health Organisation Birth Control Vaccine,” The Lancet, 11 June 1988, pp. 1295-1298. “Vaccines for Fertility Regulation,” Chapter 11, pp. 177-198, Research in Human Reproduction, Biennial Report (1986-1987), WHO Special Programme of Research, Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction (WHO, Geneva 1988).

I am still baffled why AH thinks it is okay dokay to demonize prevention of at least one infant per day dying of tetanus per day in Kenya. The tone trolling is completely silly when one realizes that the scaremongering is actually deadly.

The tone trolling is completely silly when one realizes that the scaremongering is actually deadly.

It seems to be advancing the position that RI is never going to get through to the relevant parts of the Kenyan Catholic clergy unless it hews to a vaguely expressed but nonetheless certain set of rules.

As far as the author is concerned, I have know idea what his experience and credentials are with this subject matter so anything I read I have to evaluate at face value, not knowing anything about his background.

I take it that nobody knows anything about your “background,” so if this is a refinement of your whining, all you seem to have genuinely advanced is a demand for a refund.

Wow Narad. Super.

Would you like the tally for that one to be in terms of syllables or some sort of Gödel numbering?

So, Catholic Bishops of Kenya don’t trust WHO or government.

Well, they could really easily verify whether vaccine does what they claim it does using their own data. Just compare number of children baptized before and after vaccine. They have the records, it’s simplest statistic to do. If there was sudden drop in fertility, then it’s obvious to prove. If there wasn’t, then benefits of vaccinations outweighs side effects anyway.

ione murphy,
The earliest version I can find of the story about the tetanus vaccine in the Phillippines you posted is from 2001, here. It claims that:

There is no known way for the vaccinated women to have hCG antibodies in their blood unless hCG had been artificially introduced into their bodies! […] If there were no hCG in the vaccine, or if it were present in only “insignificant” quantities, why were the vaccinated women found to be harboring anti-hCG antibodies? The WHO and the DOH had no answers.

That isn’t true, autoimmunity to hCg is a common cause of infertility, with one study finding anti-hCG antibodies in nearly a quarter of infertile women.

From outright denial the stories now shifted to the allegedly “insignificant” quantity of the hCG present; the volume of hCG present is insufficient to produce anti-hCG antibodies.

It is insufficient to produce anti-hCG antibodies, millions of times too little as Orac mentioned in his post.

But new tests designed to detect the presence of hCG antibodies in the blood sera of women vaccinated with the tetanus toxoid vaccine were undertaken. Of thirty women tested subsequent to receiving tetanus toxoid vaccine, twenty-six tested positive for high levels of anti-hCG.

Who carried out these tests? What method did they use? What controls did they use? What were the actual results and what reference range was used? Without this information it’s impossible to make any assessment of these alleged results and their significance, if any.

@AH

The tone of Orac’s post aside, do you agree or disagree with the primary thrust of his argument, which, summarized is:

1. The KCDA and Catholic Church in Kenya are spreading misinformation about the tetanus vaccine. (Whether they know it is misinformation or genuinely believe does not matter to the truth of this statement.)
2. This misinformation is creating fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD) about the vaccine among the populace.
3. That FUD leads to lower vaccine uptake.
4. Lower vaccine uptake leads to increased incidence of neonatal tetanus.
5. Increased incidence of neonatal tetanus results in greater infant mortality.
6. Therefore, whether intended or not, the KCDA and Kenyan Catholic Church are increasing the risks to both mother and infant, and this is a bad thing.

Do you disagree with any of those premises? If so, why?

D’oh.

I was going to ask that if we have ‘a vaccine that (that) permanently causes a woman to be unable to sustain a pregnancy’, why are women still undergoing tubal ligation or taking birth control pills? Why hasn’t this been developed and marketed? A lifetime of birth control for those that want it, and a tetanus shot at the same time? I could make a fortune selling that.

Sorry this is not exactly on topic, but David Dunning, Ph.D. answered questions and nonesuch on Reddit yesterday about the Dunning-Kruger effect. It was an interesting discussion. It’s amazing how people overestimate their understanding of things when they are grossly misinformed (people who think vaccines have sterilants hidden in them and delude themselves into thinking that they have a solid understanding of vaccine science.)

I’ll spare you an anecdote, and just share: Science AMA Series:I’m David Dunning, a social psychologist whose research focuses on accuracy and illusion in self-judgment (you may have heard of the Dunning-Kruger effect). How good are we at “knowing thyself”? AMA! http://www.reddit.com/r/science/comments/2m6d68/science_ama_seriesim_david_dunning_a_social/

WTF is RatCat, anyway?
Rational Catholic.

They need to do something about their SEO. I googled ‘Ratcat’ and got page after page about some Australian rock band.

Re: the alleged Philippine hCG-laced vaccine, as per @ ione murphy

Of thirty women tested subsequent to receiving tetanus toxoid vaccine, twenty-six tested positive for high levels of anti-hCG.

OK, but what about women who didn’t receive the vaccine? If you analyse the blood of 30 of them, do they all come hCG-antibody free, or do you find 26-odd of them also with antibodies?
I mean, if you don’t have a negative control to give you the background, for all we know, it’s something in the diet rather than the vaccine.

Helianthus,

I mean, if you don’t have a negative control to give you the background, for all we know, it’s something in the diet rather than the vaccine.

Exactly, and since a significant number of women have anti-hCG antibodies naturally, without a control group those figures (assuming they weren’t simply made up, which wouldn’t surprise me) are meaningless.

Also, having been involved in the development of tests using antibodies I know that interference is a major problem. Heterophile antibodies are common; if you use animal antibodies as part of your test you have to be aware that a surprising number of people have anti-animal antibodies, particularly anti-murine (anti-mouse) antibodies . There are ways of dealing with this, adding lots of mouse antigens to the reagents swamp the mouse antibodies, for example, but if the person designing the test is unaware of this, unexpected results may be obtained.

1995, the Catholic Women’s League of the Philippines won a court order halting a UNICEF anti-tetanus program because the vaccine had been laced with B-hCG, which when given in a vaccine permanently causes women to be unable to sustain a pregnancy. The Supreme Court of the Philippines found the surreptitious sterilization program had already vaccinated three million women, aged 12 to 45.

Actually reading the comments might help you avoid such blunders.

Actually reading the comments might help you avoid such blunders.
“Ione murphy” is unlikely to have read the spam before cut-&-pasting it from some Vac-Truth site, let alone reading the comments here.

a UNICEF anti-tetanus program
The idea that those benighted little Filipinos could never have organised their own National Immunization Drive, so that all vaccinations must be the work of Scary International Agencies with Hidden Agendas, is a recurring feature of this story. Again, if Ione Murphy had bothered to read the original sources — describing the immunization program before the Dark-Age Revivalists managed to disrupt it — she would see UNICEF listed as outside observers. But AntiVax and racism seem to go together.

Still harping on the 1995 antivax outbreak in the Philippines, the full sequence of reports from “Asia’s most trusted independent [sic] Catholic news source” demonstrates the total mendacity of its instigators.
http://www.ucanews.com/search/philippine-immunization

Evidently the court case and temporary injunction were timed to cause maximum disruption to the National Immunization Drive, and led to a predictable resurgence of measles (but that’s OK, sometimes you have to kill a few children in order to save zygotes).
ht_tp://www.ucanews.com/story-archive/?post_name=/1995/06/20/rise-in-measles-blamed-on-church-campaign-against-tetanus-vaccine&post_id=47515

(there are also hints that one goal was to reduce the popularity of a senatorial candidate of the time, and to increase the role of the church in Filipino politics even further).

So vaccine samples were tested, with results too low to be distinguished from artefacts and cross-sensitivity:

On Feb. 17, the head of the nuclear medicine department of a private hospital in Makati, a municipality south of Manila, confirmed reports that he had tested the controversial vaccine.
Doctor Edmundo Villacorta of the Makati Medical Center said he found “insignificant” traces of HCG-like substances in samples.
“We found in three out of six vials a very small amount of HCG-like substances, which is considered insignificant,” Villacorta told UCA News.
He also explained that the test was not an official research undertaking of the medical center. He said a colleague, a member of a pro-family life group in a Manila parish, brought tetanus toxoid samples and requested he test them.
The results, Villacorta said, were that three vials contained HCG-like substances of up to 7 milli-international units per cubic centimeter.
He said it would have been significant if the amounts found were in the hundreds or thousands of units per cubic centimeter.

The antivax crowd were aware of this negative result and a few weeks later they were parading it in the Manila court, lying about it as a positive result:

In their court petition, pro-life groups said tests conducted on vaccine samples at the nuclear medicine department of the Makati Medical Center, a prestigious private hospital, revealed HCG levels as high as seven milli-international units per cubic centimeter.

ht_tp://www.ucanews.com/story-archive/?post_name=/1995/03/20/court-stops-use-of-antitetanus-vaccine-in-immunization-drive&post_id=46985

So they were fully aware that the vaccines contained no significant HGC; “pro-life” anti-contraception concerns were not really the issue; all they cared about was politics, and a trumped-up opportunity for pious “prayers and mourning for the unborn”.
———————————————–
The point of all this is that the Philippines story was founded on lies, and sustained by lies. So when the Kenyan bishops revived that story for Kenyan politics, using identical language (“laced” is a recurring word) and stove-piping it through the KCDA agency they established for re-medievalising medicine, then they were equally mendacious. The pious suggestions that they were just misinformed, or had genuine religious concerns, do not wash.

equally mendacious

Seems about plausible, herr doctor bimler. Perhaps *someone* after learning of the ‘Catholic’ stance on cannabis should not have fantasized of sitting in the back of the cathederal, shooting zygote-based spitwads at the bishop during Sunday mass…

@#56

“. . . ORAC the pharma paid doctor accuses others of lying about vaccines. Has ORAC written yet about Dr William Thompson . . .”

Why, yes His Perspex Personage has. Please, learn to use the search function. It can save you from much public embarrassment.

Palindrom: I actually know quite enough, thank you. Religion exists to bind groups together, and there’s no better way than blood to do that. At the core of every single religion is human sacrifice. Sure we call it other things: anti-vax, martyrdom, terrorist attacks, sanctions, but the core idea is to make disposable members or outsiders suffer and die. Women and children are, always have been, and always will be considered disposable and interchangeable by religious community leaders.

To be somewhat fair, coercive sterillization and like in the name of fighting against overpopulation is not that unheard of:

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/nov/12/india-sterilisation-deaths-women-forced-camps-relatives

UNICEF and the WHO say they are opposed to forced sterilization,

http://www.unfpa.org/rights/Eliminating_forced_sterilization.pdf

but it seems like at least the WHO was involved in the Peru sterilizations before,

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Compulsory_sterilization#Peru

so I can see where some “healthy paranoia” might be quite helpful in some areas.

That much of said paranoia is related to the opposition of nearly all forms of contraception, even if voluntary, by the RCC is another matter. Even if you have some understanding for their stance that condoms don’t touch the basic issues of HIV.

However, while I have some understanding for the Kenyans, however misguided they may be, what exactly has purported secret sterilization by tainted vaccine in Africa (or collecting DNA through vaccination programs to identify youknowwho, to open up another can of worms) to do with vaccination in the US or Europe, likely to happen with untainted vaccine (and without collecting my precious nuclear juices, I presume)? But antivaxxers and judging evidence, never the twain…

However, while I have some understanding for the Kenyans, however misguided they may be,

I’ll say again — the Kenyan bishops are not misguided. Any more than the Filipino bishops were misguided when they lied about the vaccination program there (we knew they had read the non-positive laboratory results in order for them to lie about them being positive).

I do not know why the Kenyan bishops are fostering forced-sterilisation rumours in order to discourage vaccination, but it’s not because they believe those rumours themselves.

@herr doktor bimler:
I’m working under the assumption of Hanlon’s razor, e.g. “never attribute to malice what could be explained by stupidity”. Of course, bishops being at the top of the local hierarchy, and we all knowing what kind of people tend to cluster in the higher echelons of hierarchies makes for some other ideas.

OTOH, last that I looked seminaries were not that much into scientific education, I find it not that unlikely a priest’s reaction to “7 milli-IUs” would be similar to the one of most laypersons to “7 ppb of lead”(e.g. 0.1% of the mean concentration by mass in the earth crust). And when somebody explains this is not much, it might be similar to my reaction when “biological farmers”(is there any other kind) try to explain to me any biodegradable pesticide is the devil’s, but copper is OK. As mentioned, this is something of a trust issue.

Of course, there are lots of other explanations; the, err, most “innocent” one that you can’t say you’re wrong without losing face at some point. Not so nice, you try to foster support against the government or the WHO because they don’t do as you tell the to do. Etc.

On another note, officially the opposition of the RCC to nearly all forms of contraception (with even the “permitted” ones tricky from their ethical view) is that the propagation of human life is the purpose of human life in general and sexuality in particular, never mind how celibacy squares with that one. Thus all this talk about culture of death, even with pure contraceptives (never mind the distinction between abortificants and contraceptives is muddied somewhat). So if only 1% of the ire they use on the whole condom issue was aimed at the Koch brothers and like…

I’d say there is a fair chance this is an example of a little knowledge being an actually very dangerous thing. They know there is something about sterility and vaccines and HCG and they are connecting the dots all wrong. Sprinkle in paranoia for a toxic combination.

PGP, you need to increase the quality of the straw you make your men out of. The current batch really stinks.

@Orac:
Let’s just say scientific illiteracy is depressing in every group, though thankfully it’s not universal for Catholics; one of our university’s best lecturers on biology most studies have very fond rememberance of was a “Lehrer im Hochschuldienst” (“school teacher in university service”) having studied biology and RC theology…

You can’t expect people to have technical competency in every area, including this one. It’s never going to happen. Which is why trust is so important. If the scientific community acts like every person, including the Bishops, who doesn’t know what they are talking about is a moron or ” ” fill in the blank, then here you go. This is what happens. They will go to someone they trust. Also there is the unfortunate habit that many, though not all, supposedly rational science types have of ridiculing religion and sincere moral beliefs, or at the very least treating them as if they are absurdly irrelevant, because only the proper science should matter. But of course, people aren’t going to bother with the science if they don’t trust the scientist. Its just human nature. It’s not rational or intelligent to conclude they would do otherwise.
I will now open the floor to further accusations of tone trolling and sacrosanct piety.

AH. People aren’t expected to have technical competency in every field. They are expected to know when they aren’t an expert and stop telling actual experts that they are wrong, immoral murderers.

@AH: Done!

Look. This is a blog. I write about what interests me in the style that I like to write in. Period. It’s no more than that. If people like to read what I write (as a not unrespectable number do, as evidenced by my decent traffic), great. I get a little more money from the powers that be at Scienceblogs and the satisfaction of knowing there are a few thousand people a day who enjoy my brain droppings. If not, I’d still do what I do, because what I do is my hobby, for which I happen to be lucky enough to have been invited to write for a blog collective that frees me of the need to worry about Internet hosting and even pays me a bit of money, enough to cover Internet access and a few other minor things. If Scienceblogs let me go tomorrow, I’d set up a WordPress site and continue as before without pay. (Indeed, there have been a few times when I’ve been tempted to do that anyway.) No reason not to, as I’ve been at this nearly ten years.

Note that this is not a scientific journal. It is not an official organ of a scientific organization like the WHO, which has to be measured and offend as few people as possible. It is not a news media outlet. It is my blog, and it is my hobby. That is all it is.

It is for those reasons that I get a bit perturbed when self-righteous tone trolls who are obviously not regular readers come in here and lecture me about how they think I should blog in order to get my message out. When it’s a regular reader, a fellow blogger, or someone whom I respect and trust, like (for example) Paul Offit, telling me I’ve gone too far, then I listen. I listen hard and sometimes make corrections. However, when it’s some anonymous lone tone troll whining about how nasty I am, I tell him, quite bluntly: I don’t care. You’re wasting your time, and no one here is impressed.

Alright, fair enough. I can see I’ve set off your last nerve. I’m not implying that it is this blog or you that are the primary offenders; it’s just something I encounter frequently. And very often it’s the comment sections that are the worst. you certainly have the expertise and the personal freedom to do what you want. I get that this is your blog. I was trying to make a real point, although apparently not successfully. I shall comment no further.

AH,

If the scientific community acts like every person, including the Bishops, who doesn’t know what they are talking about is a moron or ” ” fill in the blank, then here you go. This is what happens. They will go to someone they trust.

I disagree. I think that pussyfooting around makes the problem worse. Scientists tend to avoid claims of certainty in favor of measured scientific language which laypersons either don’t understand and/or interpret as being evasive. I think Orac’s approach is far more likely to be effective, except in those cases where no amount of rational explanation will persuade.

When someone is genuinely mistaken, perhaps a gentle correction is suitable, but that clearly isn’t the case here. If someone is going to give vulnerable women information that is very likely to put their lives and the lives of their children at risk, they had better be very certain indeed that information is accurate. If they are not, or if they are deliberately spreading life-threatening misinformation as seems to be the case here, I think they deserve to be targeted with scorn and ridicule.

IMO this approach, especially when accompanied by hard facts that make a very strong case, as Orac has done, is more likely to change people’s minds than a gentler one.

Wow. I just went back and looked at the RatCat blog post:
The recent comments there are truly depressing. Let’s just say there are a lot of Catholics who believe this and are arguing all sorts of nonsense at the author of the blog post.

The RatCat blogger is admirably non-confrontational, and carries on patiently arguing, even as the defiantly ignorant commentor insists “You said that the measured levels of HGC were right at the threshold of noise… you see, it’s measurable! The whole story is TRUE!” The blogger sets out the evidence free from snark or accusatory words, and the whole narrative is permeated with the odour of joss-sticks and honourable high-mindedness.

So there is no need for Orac to write the kind of post that AH suggests, because that post already exists.

@AH:

“One horse-laugh is worth ten thousand syllogisms. It is not only more effective; it is also vastly more intelligent.”
– HL Mencken

I’m working under the assumption of Hanlon’s razor, e.g. “never attribute to malice what could be explained by stupidity”. Of course, bishops being at the top of the local hierarchy, and we all knowing what kind of people tend to cluster in the higher echelons of hierarchies makes for some other ideas.

I appreciate the value of Hanlon’s razor. I share the cognitive bias to opt for the meaningful narrative and see bad intent when there is only the boring happenstance of human stupidity.

At the same time, we have American politics to prove that people will oppose a public health initiative, knowingly lie about its contents, and do everything they can to ensure it fails, not because they are personally opposed to public health (or because they think it is a concealed campaign of genocide), but simply because they want to defeat the rival politician who is promoting it.

so maybe there needs to be a corollary to Hanlon’s razor: never attribute to stupidity what can be explained by political maneuvers?

@herr doktor bimler:
I agree, though at the moment, they could still backpaddle somewhat.

On a more general note, the bishops might remember that there is a nice little RC tradition called casuistry

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Casuistry#Casuistry_in_modern_times

and they might weight in the sin of staying silent to Western or governmental abuse of the population, which, as already said, is known to happen AND the sin of needlessly orchestrating the death of mothers and children due to neonatal tetanus.

@brewandferment:
Err, in this context “political maneuvers” would be synonymous with “malice”, so it’d be the opposite of Hanlon’s razor. As with all of those razors, just like Occam’s, it’s not exact; just look at our nervous system, according to Occam, we need only assume one excitatory and one inhibitory neurotransmitter. and then look at the numbers of neurotransmitters, neuromodulators, hormones etc. that’s in the stew.

As for political maneuvering in Kenya, it’s a possibility, but not certain; I don’t know the actors involved, though in general, African RC (and Anglican) bishops have a reputation for being somewhat conservative, even compared to US-European conservative ones. And you don’t need the Milgram experiment

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milgram_experiment

to know believing one’s right make for a wonderful apologetic for dubious behaviour…

AH – if you enjoy criticising the presentation of information based on its tone, or the tone taken by the commenters, perhaps you could head over to Natural News and find out a little bit more about Mike Adams. That might allow you to understand why he is given so little respect here. He absolutely, utterly, fully deserves none when it comes to matters of science.

@Maddy:
I guess AH is not so much defending Mike Adams but the Kenyan bishops, and I can somewhat empathize there. While we tend to view “progressive” politics like social democracy as the source of good and conservatives as just repressing said progress, in reality it was somewhat more complicated…

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Black_Stork

And while eugenics is not that fashionable today, I have learned it’s quite important to look at some of the “great ideas” touted by both left and right; for example, some time ago a friend had a lecturer who was into an extreme version of inclusion

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inclusion_(education)

e.g. everybody passes, regardless if he can count or read. When she asked about you could use an education like that in daily life, he quiped that was what private education was for, another one of the areas he was involved in. Talk about conflict of interest[1].

TL;DR, as the old communist saying goes, “wer hat uns verraten, die Sozialdemokraten”(“who has tricked us, the social democrats/Labour), and I have developed a soft spot for conservatism with time.

BTW, I’m thinking about European conservatism here, not the bastard child of laissez-faire capitalism and rigid social code that passes for it these days. 😉

[1] BTW, why do we call that one “conflict of interest”? There is hardly any conflict in the head of the (expletive deleted) involved…

Justthestats: Sigh. Look, human sacrifice is a constant in every religion. That’s a fact. Sure, it’s gussied up and renamed, but every religious person knows that if there’s not blood on the floor/pavement/earth, you don’t have religion. You have a sewing circle or a good Samaritans society. People need scapegoats and people to look down on, cause we’re nasty critters.

Count your supplicantory informatuditionings and admonishmatisations, AH — At least, he didn’t call you a ‘pedant’.

Guineapigs are nasty. And they can’t learn/be trained to use a litterbox. They are not very ‘warm and affectionate’. They typically hide under the dresser and shit little guineapig pellets two inches deep. Though, it is funny to turn up the stereo and listen to them ‘keep the beat’ by hitting their heads on the bottoms of dressers.

This is far more general than opposition to vaccines.

Explaining away opinions one disagrees with by attributing them to Malthusians can be used for a wide variety of opinions, many of them on opposite sides of a question. For example, are vaccines intended to kill off the excess population or are vaccine bans intended to allow population-stabilizing diseases? You can make similar arguments for both sides of pesticides, GMO foods, or nuclear energy.

This is also far more general than Catholics making fools of themselves. Many of the comments here show that absurd conspiracy theories are not limited to Catholics or even theists.

Look, human sacrifice is a constant in every religion. That’s a fact.

My most charitable interpretation of PGP’s behavior is that she is in the depths of deep, continuing depression, and that when ultra-cynical and ultra-negative thoughts run through her head, she actually knows on some level that they’re absolute bullshit, but she doesn’t feel like she has the emotional stamina to do what the rest of us do: talk back to those thoughts, find counter-examples (how in the hell could anyone argue that Jainism is based on human sacrifice?? if Jainism isn’t, then the pat assurance that “human sacrifice is a constant in every religion” is just a fucking lie and should be utterly disregarded, along with any source that tries to pass off such bullshit as truth) – sort truth out from the lies, and try to live with the truth.

So she calls upon us to do it for her. She posts her most negative thoughts here, and then expects us to do the work of reality testing for her. She hopes that we will see through the nonsense, and point out to her the path out of the cage of her negative thoughts.

Even in this most charitable interpretation of her behavior, she is being thoughtless and selfish. Many of us have struggled with emotional disorders ourselves – many still do. We know it’s hard to see through the terrible veils that depression and anxiety drape over the world. We know that everyone needs the help of others sometimes.

But we also know that when you need the help of others, you ASK them for help, and you say THANK YOU when you receive that help. PGP has never done either. She just comes here and dumps the problems on us, and if she gets any benefit from our struggles against the overwhelming bullshit she spews out, we never even get acknowledgement. The ONLY response we ever get is at best, her telling us we’re too naive for not swallowing the bullshit, or grudgingly admitting that, while it’s a “fact” that ALL white males are murderous and rapey, or ALL Christians hold women to be valueless, or EVERYONE living south of the Mason-Dixon line would gladly restore the Confederacy tomorrow, PERHAPS the individuals among us who would otherwise fall under her bigoted description are exceptions.

Even in the most charitable interpretation, PGP’s behavior has been abhorrently self-centered and abusive.

And, if by some chance my interpretation is entirely mistaken, and PGP does not share these slanders in hopes that we will refute them, but because she sincerely holds all these bigoted beliefs – for pity’s sake, why can’t she just go away and start her own hate group, already? She’s hardly any different than they are, in terms of the “facts” she pulls out of her ass to rationalize her hatred.

every religious person knows that if there’s not blood on the floor/pavement/earth, you don’t have religion.

Yes, those Unitarians and New England Congregationalists and Presbyterians and Quakers are clearly just bloothirsty hordes. You’d better watch out when they come out of Church on Sunday and head for home in their Subarus, ’cause they’re all jacked up and ready to run you over deliberately. /poe alert

Yesterday, in the Kenyan publication Daily Nation:

Church misinterpreted test results: Doctor

“The tetanus vaccine does not contain the Beta hCG group,” said the [managing director] of Lancet, one of the six labs contracted, Dr Ahmed Kalebi.

The pathologist said the church misinterpreted the results of the tests that were conducted in his lab in March and October.

[Text omitted]

ALTERNATIVE LABS
Dr Kalebi said the vials delivered to Lancet by the church were treated as human samples and not as vaccines. “We tested these samples as we would a request to determine pregnancy”.

The hCG hormone is produced in large amounts throughout pregnancy and therefore aids in determining results of a pregnancy test.

He added that it was not communicated to him and his team that the vials were a vaccine and not a human specimen.

“Had we been informed from the very beginning, we would have advised them on alternative labs to take the tests to for accurate results and even interpreted the data properly,” Dr Kalebi said.

He explained to the Sunday Nation on the telephone that there are specific procedures for conducting tests, and a numerical figure in a test cannot be interpreted to mean the presence or absence of an element in another test.

“We are a human-sample testing laboratory with equipment developed to carry out tests on serum, urine and other human specimens; the same procedures used on clinical tests on a matter such as pregnancy are not appropriate for tests such as a vaccine”.

INAPPROPRIATE TESTS
As a consequence of using these inappropriate tests, he said, low levels of hCG-like activity were found in some samples of the vaccine.”

I am wondering when the Kenyan Catholic Medical Association and the Kenyan Conference of Catholic Bishops will apologize and make amends, by promoting prenatal tetanus vaccination. I’m not holding my breath.

I missed this previously

Health officials want to punish doctor in tetanus vaccine dispute, BY ALPHONCE SHIUNDU, Updated Tuesday, November 4th 201

Kenya’s health authorities have vowed to punish the doctor who asked the Catholic Church to reject the tetanus vaccine.

Health Cabinet Secretary James Macharia and the Director of Medical Services Nicholas Muraguri, said they had gathered enough evidence to show Stephen Karanja, an obstetrician gynaecologist, had breached the professional ethics.

Speaking at a meeting with the National Assembly’s health committee at Nairobi’s Continental House, Mr Macharia and Mr Muaraguri said they had tested the vaccines in independent laboratories both locally and internationally, and the results showed there was no link between the tetanus jab and the “conspiracy theory” that it was meant to be a form of birth control.

They said samples had been tested in Nairobi (Lancet laboratories) and in South Africa for a birth control hormone. “There’s no evidence of traces of the said hormone, HCG, in the vaccines that were procured centrally by the World Health Organisation, and the United Nations,” Muraguri told the MPs at the meeting.

He said with the evidence, they were ready to summon Dr Karanja to the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Board for disciplinary action. “It is clear that he was wrong, and we now have to take action. It is very unethical. He based his arguments on some purported evidence, which, even after asking him to submit it, he has not done so to date,” said Muraguri.

Macharia said: “Dr Karanja, who is advising the church, told me he is a believer in the theory that the vaccine is meant to introduce birth control. When you hear that, you know you have to take his utterances with a pinch of salt.”

So. We’ll see.

The main problem with vaccines is there definitely is evidence that vaccines are causing problems that never used to happen say 45 years ago. Things ARE being added to vaccines that will cause problems that were never added to vaccines decades ago. For one, the incidence of autism clearly happening after the administration of vaccines to a child has greatly increased, greatly increasing the number of autistic children, a very heart breaking situation for any parent and also for the child. I have heard of qualified scientists with PhD’s speak of this relationship between vaccines and autism for one on the radio.

RockNRoad, where’s your proof that the the additional number of diseases for which effective and and safe vaccines have been developed…have caused autism after they are administered?

It seems to me, that I would remember the names of those “qualified scientists with PhDs (who) speak of this relationship between vaccines and autism” on the radio.

Things ARE being added to vaccines that will cause problems that were never added to vaccines decades ago.

Such as?

I have heard of qualified scientists with PhD’s speak of this relationship between vaccines and autism for one on the radio.

Have you ruled out the “fluoride in children’s ice-cream” explanation?

AF: “how in the hell could anyone argue that Jainism is based on human sacrifice?? if Jainism isn’t, then the pat assurance that “human sacrifice is a constant in every religion” is just a fucking lie and should be utterly disregarded, along with any source that tries to pass off such bullshit as truth) – sort truth out from the lies, and try to live with the truth.”

Jainism doesn’t have any martyrs? It doesn’t have any people who died for the faith? Quakers had martyrs too, I’m sure. Unitarianism is too new to have any, and I think my sewing circle argument applies there.

As for the rest, I really don’t appreciate being diagnosed over the ‘net, so kindly knock it off. I’m aware I generalize. It keeps me safe and eases socializing when I know what not to do and what is expected behavior. Like say, not smiling or exhibiting any emotion in public, or practicing lying for an upcoming trip. Or making sure I keep the happy face on when with my friends. (Like I’d ever tell most of them the truth.)
Fake it til you make it is a good rule to keep in mind when out in public. I do a surprisingly good impression of a polite, thoughtful human being. And expecting the worst case scenario isn’t ever a bad thing.

Tim: Please for the love of whatever, sober up. You wouldn’t know a guinea pig from a ferret.

@AH

I see you are still going on about tone. Since you didn’t answer the question before, let me ask again. Do you agree with the following premises from Orac’s post:

1. The KCDA and Catholic Church in Kenya are spreading misinformation about the tetanus vaccine. (Whether they know it is misinformation or genuinely believe does not matter to the truth of this statement.)
2. This misinformation is creating fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD) about the vaccine among the populace.
3. That FUD leads to lower vaccine uptake.
4. Lower vaccine uptake leads to increased incidence of neonatal tetanus.
5. Increased incidence of neonatal tetanus results in greater infant mortality.
6. Therefore, whether intended or not, the KCDA and Kenyan Catholic Church are increasing the risks to both mother and infant, and this is a bad thing.

If you do not agree with those, why? What is wrong?

Guineapigs [..] can’t learn/be trained to use a litterbox.
Yes, they happily sit there crapping in their own food supplies, but are human beings really in any position to criticize them for that?

PGP,
If you don’t like to be diagnosed on the interweb based on the facade of what you present to us (which is being unreasonably all we have to work with), then why do you post here? You’re not going to convince anyone here that your method is better than our method of dealing with peoples. no one will accept your method when they are are doing much better than yourself unless, your method is actually better. Period.

Your method, is it any better than the rest of us have been doing so far? If yes, prove it.

Alain

I’m pretty sure that AH has left the building, but I’ve yet to figure out how “I’m guessing [Mike Adams] has very little influence with anyone in Kenya” squares with getting upset over this outlet.

PgP,
I do so know the difference between a guineapig and a ferr… Oh. That explains alot…

PgP, I was very close to a person just like you. So close that I had to stop feeding her raw tunafish heads for about 9 months. She had more facets than a finely cut diamond and to all the others in her ‘life’ I was a well-blogged psyco-demon; What I really was to her was a Ken doll. She, on the otherside of a modified bagphone, turned out to be quite sociable with anyone listed in the phonebook. Color me surprized.

Trust

More wisdom from Dr Bishop Karanja:

Dr. Karanja underlines some of the reasons as to why there is a high prevalence of cancer cases as; many sexual partners, early sex debuts, use of contraceptives and staying too long without having a child in the case of women.

Dr. Karanja notes that despite being vaccinated against Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) that causes cancer of the cervix, one can still get it if they indulge in irresponsible sex.

Today, children are even suffering from the disease. Dr. Karanja notes that the reason why children are also dying of cancer is because lactating mothers are taking contraceptives that are passed on to children through breast milk.

Reassuringly, not all Kenyan religious leaders are sunk in medieval ignorance:

“The Muslim stand is that since it (vaccination) is for betterment of all women, especially because during delivery there is a lot of use of sharp metallic objects, then we have to support and advocate its use,” said Dr Sheikh.
He added: “Unless it is proved otherwise, for now we have told Muslim women to go for the vaccine.”

Fr Patrick Kinyanjui of the Reformed Catholic Church in Kenya opposes the bishops’ claims, saying they are not qualified to speak on the matter.
“Do they understand the pain of losing a child? Do they know how it feels to watch your child cry endlessly at night and you don’t know what’s ailing them?” posed, Fr Kinyanjui, who left the Roman Catholic after getting married.
He said his wife had given birth even after being vaccinated against tetanus.

Fr Kinyanjui says people should check the population growths in the three countries to ascertain whether the claims were true.
Philippines’ population stood at 98.4 million as at last year from 62 million in 1990. Mexico’s population has also grown from 86 million in 1990 to 122 million while that of Nicaragua has surged from 4.1 million to six million last year.

you don’t have religion. You have a sewing circle or a good Samaritans society

No true Scotsman would join a sewing circle!

@herr doktor bimler,

Yes, they happily sit there crapping in their own food supplies, but are human beings really in any position to criticize them for that?

I rarely criticize guinea pigs myself, as they never take my advice. But sure.

I offer the following thoughts on Antaeus Feldspar’s comment #157 as only my humble opinion, and I mean every word of that overused phrase. I do not claim my opinion is anything but an opinion, and seek to assent. Just my 2¢

This is one of the most thoughtful posts I have read on the Internet as far as I can remember. I also found it quite moving. I took it as displaying compassion and sympathy for PGP, and to be a sincere attempt to address shared human weaknesses in contrast to the glib dismissals that are common here. When Antaeus notes it’s not easy to talk back to your own thoughts, to seek counter-examples, and live with complicated realities, I hear a voice that has earned that view from hard experience. And I find that implicit revelation brave. I also find it brave that Antaeus does not “pussyfoot” his criticism, or wrap it with a happy blow. He’s honest about how he feels. He feels abused. He hurts. But he is not “playing the victim card”, acting out of self-interest. He’s reaching out to PGP. And he has framed his appeal to her in terms he might imagine she would understand and value: suggesting that some of her posts here actually undermine the independence she would seem to desire.

Still just MHO, but I didn’t take Antaeus to be diagnosing PGP. I thought it was clear he was speculating, tossing out ideas, not pontificating like he ‘knows’ PGP. You know, ‘If the shoe fits…” if not, no harm in trying.

In contrast to what Antaeus wrote, I look back on my own comment to PGP in #93 and find it embarrassingly inadequate. I seem to have imagined I was making a positive contribution by refraining from ad hominem snark, deferring to a justly famous TAM talk rather than risking the arrogance of speaking in my own voice, and pointing to some obvious exceptions to PGPs broad stereotypes. But just citing this or that remains pedantic/paternalist, and doesn’t get to the heart of the issue, Because i did not speak from my heart.

So yeah, PGP, sometimes it really does hurt to read what you write. It’s not a severe hurt in my case, but it’s not nothing. it hurts to think you’d malign some of the finest people I’ve ever known simply because they have some measure of spiritual belief. It hurts to think some bad experience had led you to feel so unsafe that you expect worst case scenarios and build walls against the world, as I worry you may add to your own hurt by doing so.

Maybe my feelings are just my problem. Maybe what you think is none of my business. Or maybe Antaeus is right, and you’ve made your issues our business to at least some mall extent by airing them here on RI. Food for thought…

I do know that pretty much every decent and good set of ideas, secular as well as religious, generated by homo sapiens sapiens has had its martyrs, most of them not by choice.

On May 4th 1886, a man named Albert Parsons was asked to go to a labor rally already underway nearby and address the crowd. He assented, walked to assembly and spoke in favor of union organizing, the eight-hour day, and peaceful protests against the murders of four workers at the hands of strike-breaking Pinkertons eariler that week. His wife and children had accompanied him, and since it began to rain as he ended his speech, he gathered his family, left the rally and retired to a laborer’s hall to keep them dry. Long after his departure, mounted police arrived to forcibly disperse the remaining crowd at the rally. Violence broke out and a policeman was killed by a small bomb. Eight men were arrested, tried and convicted for conspiracy to commit murder — all merely for speaking at, attending, or publishing notice of the rally. On November 11, 1887, Parsons and three others were sent to the gallows and executed. In Chicago, Illinois, The United States of America, Land of the Free.

So how does having martyrs make you bad? Emmit Till’s family might like to know…

That was supposed to be “and seek NO assent” in the first paragraph, “wrap it with a happy BOW” in the 2nd, and “some SMALL extent” in the 6th. Mea cupla.

BTW, again just my own speculation: I think Tim is a jester, a wag, not half as stoned as he’d have us believe. I also suspect he plays more of a loon on the Web than he may be IRL. I also took his comment #155 as more a riff on PGP’s nym than a critique of PGP herself. In that, I thought it was pretty funny. But then I made the mistake of convincing my Mom to buy me a pair of guinea pigs when I was a kid because I thought the ones kept in the science classroom were so cute. This was not a good thing for me, my Mom, or the guinea pigs. They squealed loudly and endlessly throughout the night. Poor things, made to suffer from human hubris and stupidity… They might enjoy the head-banging though, if its Motorhead.

Politicalguineapig @167

I do a surprisingly good impression of a polite, thoughtful human being.

Perhaps you should try that approach in your posts here.

Perhaps you should try that approach in your posts here.

I seem to recall suggesting the very same thing some time ago. It’s wasted effort.

Looks like the KCDA started dec 24, 2013
http://www.kccb.or.ke/home/com/speech-by-his-eminence-john-cardinal-njue-during-the-launch-of-the-kenya-catholic-doctors-association/
“I am greatly honoured on behalf of the Kenya Episcopal Conference to address you on this important occasion when we Launch the Kenya Catholic Doctors Association.

The Catholic Church has since the beginning engaged in Evangelization through the Social Ministry. She has engaged in many social Programmes among them the health apostolate.

The Social Teaching of the Church guides this apostolate thus helping in the perpetuation of Christ‚ Healing Ministry. When Christ came to Nazara and read the scroll, He proclaimed the year of favour from the Lord.

The spirit of the Lord is on me, for He has anointed me to bring the good news to the afflicted. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to captives, sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, to proclaim a year of favour from the Lord‚ Luke 4:18 -19

We also today launch the Kenya Catholic Doctors‚ Association as a part of our celebration of the Year of Faith, the Year of the Lord.”

And they have other ways of limiting births:
http://www.kccb.or.ke/home/news-2/ovulation-conference/

“Bishop Salesius Mugambi today lamented the lack of cooperation from the government on the Tetanus issue. He was the key note speaker at a Billings Ovulation Method Teacher Training Course at Dimesse Retreat Centre, Karen.

The course is organised by Matercare International in association with WOOMB, Australia.

The objective of the conference is to train the trainers of the Billings Method in rural areas and to re-establish WOOMB in Kenya. Sixty participants from Kenya, Tanzania, Congo, Sudan and Zimbabwe are attending.

The Speakers include two Senior Trainers from WOOMB International from Melbourne Australia who were close collaborators for many years with the Drs John and Evelyn Billings. Other international speakers are from Kenya, Canada, Tanzania and Sudan.

Certificates of training (from Woomb, Australia), are being issued after the conference after an exam.

Woomb Australia have trained 50,000 teachers of Billings in China, backed by the Chinese government

The Billings Ovulation Method is used by millions of women around the world. It was developed by Australian doctors, John and Evelyn Billings, validated by eminent international scientists and successfully evaluated by the World Health Organisation.

The method is easy to learn and simple to use, and once the natural signals of fertility are understood, the Billings Ovulation Method™ is confidently used to achieve or avoid pregnancy. An important side benefit is that this knowledge also provides information to the woman which safeguards her reproductive health. To learn more about Billings, visit http://www.WOOMB.org.”

The Catholic Church has since the beginning engaged in Evangelization through the Social Ministry. She has engaged in many social Programmes among them the health apostolate.

There is a lesson there about the pitfalls of letting ‘faith-based agencies’ get involved with the delivery of a government’s social-welfare and health services.

And they have other ways of limiting births:
Buggrit, that “Billings-Method” crap is giving me flashbacks to the 1980s and “Our Bodies Ourselves”, DO NOT WANT.

Bishop / Doctor Karanja of the KCDA states that pregnancy is essential for a woman to avoid cancer, so I can’t see him supporting ovulation-monitoring methods if they happened to work.

The method is easy to learn and simple to use, and once the natural signals of fertility are understood, the Billings Ovulation Method™ is confidently used to achieve or avoid pregnancy.

I owe my existence to a similarly unreliable method of contraception.

What do we always say about N = 1?

The method they espouse isn’t perfect — far from it. But it is actually better than nothing. And in a part of the world where contraception is socially abhorrent even beyond what the Catholic Church says, “nothing” is often these women’s only realistic alternative. Obviously that’s something that needs to be fixed, but it’s not going to be fixed quickly. It’s not a right-to-life thing, generally. It’s a macho thing; the culture is very much male-dominated, and the sentiment is that you are properly a man if you can get your wife pregnant. So contraception is seen like trying to be less of a man. It’s been said, and rightly so, that you’ll only make headway with population growth if women get full control of their sexuality. Stuff like this is why.

My guinea pig said ‘oui oui’ and liked the following song, sadmar:

………………………….”Run Runaway”

……………………………….Hold on!
…………………….I like black and white
………………(Dreaming of black and white)
……………………You like black and white
…………………………..Run run away

…………………………..See chameleon
……………………..(Lying there in the sun)
……………………….All things to everyone
……………………………Run run away

The main problem with vaccines is there definitely is evidence that vaccines are causing problems that never used to happen say 45 years ago.

What problems are we seeing that never used to happen 45 years ago, and what evidence demonstrates that a causal association exists between routine childhood vaccination and these problems? Be specific.

Things ARE being added to vaccines that will cause problems that were never added to vaccines decades ago.

Again: what problems, what things are being added to vaccines that were never added to vaccines decades ago (how many decades ago, BTW?) and how has it been demonstrated the use of these ingredients in vaccine formulations is causally associated to these problems?

For one, the incidence of autism clearly happening after the administration of vaccines to a child has greatly increased, greatly increasing the number of autistic children, a very heart breaking situation for any parent and also for the child.

Of course, not only is there no evidence of a causal association between routine vaccination and autism spectrum disorders, there is instead a large body of evidence rebutting the possible existence of such a causal association.

Further, it isn’t clear that the actual number of autistic children in the population has greatly increased, rather than the number of people being diagnosed as autistic is increasing as a function of a number of factors, including broadened diagnostic criteria, diagnostic substitution and increased and improved surveillance.

I have heard of qualified scientists with PhD’s speak of this relationship between vaccines and autism for one on the radio.

And as we all know radio talk shows are the forum in which working scientists present the results of their studies and defend the conclusions they draw from analyzing that data

No, wait–that isn’t it at all! The forum where they do so is instead peer-reviewed scientific journals,.

.I have heard of qualified scientists with PhD’s speak of this relationship between vaccines and autism for one on the radio.

Oh, wow, on the radio! Coast to Coast AM? Gary Null Show? PRN?

Heh . . . and all i can think now, Herr Doktor, is: “And do *you* have an associates degree from VermTech?”

😀

My Guinea pig said “oui oui” alot and liked the following song, sadmar:

……………………………………”Run Runaway”

………………………………………..Hold on!
……………………………….I like black and white
…………………………(Dreaming of black and white)
…………………………….You like black and white
…………………………………..Run run away

………………………………….See chameleon
…………………………….(Lying there in the sun)
……………………………..All things to everyone
………………………………….Run run away

Our guinea pig liked Rock’n Roll Part 2 by Gary Glitter.

When she heard the thumping beat at the beginning of the song, she would start making this cooing sound.

We guessed maybe it reminded her of the sound of her mother’s heartbeat when she was in the womb, but who knows?

Our kids weren’t very good about keeping her in her box, so I second the part about leaving droppings all over the place.

squirrelelite,

Too cute. Yea, I couldn’t stand critters in cages so it was always flack from mom; Especially the poopy little piggy.

A really great pet was a hedgehog a friend offered me. His inlaws had picked one up (from a fleamarket — horrid, I know) for their nature-loving, homeschooled kids and I guess they quickly figured out that was *unwise*.

“A what?”, I said.
“A hedgehog. It’s all ‘pokey’.”
“sure, bring him over.”
“Ohh, I don’t think so. You need to come handle this thing!”

That thing was so neat and readily took to a litter box with no training required. They shouldn’t be kept in cages as they love to roam. Mine would often wake me up by gently licking and digging around in my hair at the back of my head — Which felt really good as there was always some kind of eczema there, or something.

They’re mostly impervious to poisons and seek it out to paint their spines with it. I guess, he thought my hair was toxic because after my ‘licking’ he’d foam himself up applying the whatever to each and every spine.

They’re nocturnal but he would come out of his little house for a peabreak and ‘midnight snack’ at around 9:00 am every morning. Well, their metabolism is so high that by the time you realize there is something wrong they drop dead. — Mine literally did. One day, I went up after breakfast to find him with all 4’s spread out from under him like some cartoon donky after the last straw caricature half way to his 9am snack.

Published today:

http://www.catholicherald.co.uk/commentandblogs/2014/11/20/the-unkillable-catholic-vaccination-conspiracy/

For others – particularly those who worked in public health in Mexico in 1993, in Nicaragua and the Philippines in 1994, and in Sri Lanka a decade after that – it was merely wearily familiar. The unkillable Catholic vaccination conspiracy had returned from the dead. If only the same could be said, alas, of the hundreds of children whose lives have ended because of it.

[paragraphs omitted]

There is an easy way to rebut this. The Philippines remains fecund. Since that time 128 million women have been vaccinated and not a single one has been verified to have been sterilised. Neither has there been a single whistleblower from the WHO – if it is a conspiracy it is astonishingly good at keeping its conspirators in line and astonishingly bad at actually achieving its goal. But, by the by, it has been very good at its ostensible goal: neonatal tetanus deaths are a 10th of what they were.

Heard enough of the church hate and extreme views from both sides that lack common sense. A Group opposed to abortion is not necessarily opposed to vaccination. Tithes making the church a lot of money? Do you even go to church? if any money is collected it goes to aid and if not caring/housing the clergy and parish. You have made no response to the question why would a pro-vaccine group oppose tetanus shots for no reason other than to put fear into women turning them away from a vaccine to treat a very serious problem. I can fully understand why some people would exaggerate or imply other links to sinister acts of the past or present..but not this actual group. It is not bias and presents what they have tests showing hcg and odd immunization techniques. Whether its making women infertile or not is one thing they have to answer for but even if it is not..why the odd amount of injections ..why single out fertile women and why is hcg present in the first place if it is?

Mick, if I show a doctor a photograph of what appears to be a human arm with red spots on it, and he diagnoses measles, but I forgot to mention that what I showed him was the arm of a mannequin, I can’t then present his diagnosis as evidence that mannequins can contract measles. I can’t present his diagnosis as evidence of anything, because by depriving him of vital context, I twisted his professional observations.

The results of testing the vaccines were obtained by labs who weren’t correctly notified what they were testing. They were not told “this is a vaccine, and we want you to test to see if it’s a sterilization agent”; they were led to believe they were testing a human specimen to see if the woman was pregnant. The idea that these bishops acted correctly in submitting a sample to a lab without making it clear to them what the sample was and what they were looking for is dubious enough. The idea that the bishops have been shown to be vindicated in their concern because of the results, results which are meaningless because they were obtained by applying an inappropriate test, is just ludicrous!

It’s not our responsibility to explain why these bishops would, while claiming to be a “pro-vaccine group”, take an action highly damaging to an important vaccination effort, based on shoddy evidence which they may have even knowingly ginned up. It’s clear that they did; if anyone needs to explain why they would do such a thing, it’s them. Perhaps you would see that if you weren’t coming at this issue with clear prejudice, but anyone who asks why a campaign to prevent neonatal tetanus would “single out fertile women” is obviously not displaying anything akin to common sense.

why single out fertile women
Why single out women who can give birth, for a campaign to prevent infants acquiring tetanus at birth?
Mick is either very stupid or very dishonest.

Heard enough of the church hate and extreme views from both sides that lack common sense.

Um, we already know what the position of the Roman Catholic Church is: It favors vaccination. The question is the lying nuts at Human Life International, Cog4Life, etc., who are roughly the equivalent of these types.

A Group opposed to abortion is not necessarily opposed to vaccination.

That’s nice. Unfortunately, HLI (unlike, say, the Pontificial Academy for Life) doesn’t only make up lies about tetanus vaccine, they oppose polio, MMR, varicella and shingles, Hep A, and rabies vaccines using the “aborted fetuses” gambit.

Tithes making the church a lot of money? Do you even go to church? if any money is collected it goes to aid and if not caring/housing the clergy and parish.

Catholics don’t “tithe,” but the extremely healthy finances of the Catholic Church are wholly irrelevant.

You have made no response to the question why would a pro-vaccine group oppose tetanus shots for no reason other than to put fear into women turning them away from a vaccine to treat a very serious problem.

There is no “pro-vaccine group” involved here.

I can fully understand why some people would exaggerate or imply other links to sinister acts of the past or present..but not this actual group.

Why not? They’ve been repeating the same lie for decades and ignore actual Church policy.

It is not bias and presents what they have tests showing hcg and odd immunization techniques.

A set of bogus test results, that is. What’s this about “odd techniques”?

Whether its making women infertile or not is one thing they have to answer for

What makes you think this? They certainly haven’t bothered with this detail in the past.

but even if it is not..why the odd amount of injections

Five doses is enough to confer protection for the whole of the childbearing years: [unicef.org]/immunization/23245_mnt.html. If Kenya had a robust health-care infrastructure providing childhood and decennial doses, do you think there would be a tetanus problem in the first place?

..why single out fertile women

Because the idea is to address neonatal tetanus? I get the impression that you really didn’t put much thought into this comment.

and why is hcg present in the first place if it is?

This has already been answered.

Tithes making the church a lot of money? Do you even go to church?
The only commenter to mention “tithes” was Horatio, who begins that comment by describing himself as “a deconvert”, so Mick’s question about “even going to church” adds to the general picture of illiteracy.

and why is hcg present in the first place if it is?

My understanding is that none of the HCG readings were over the noise threshold, so there isn’t any good reason to suppose that HCG was present in the first place.

@ Johnny:

Right.
And the hilarity continues on Jake’s latest post whilst he persists about whether someone is writing or not ( a frequent topic) – I wonder why he fixates upon that?
Orac’s minions make a good showing there as well.

Poor pathetic Jake. He’ll never be an epidemiologist and he will never be an award winning journalist.

We’ve got Narad, justthestats and Lawrence and Jake has jen and White Rose.

Where’s John Worst?

Lilady, that’s kind of like having Braxton Bragg and John Bell Hood.

(I’m waiting for Lucario to chime in when he gets the reference).

Shay @#214:

And John Bell Hood as an army commander at that – not when he was kicking butt and taking names as a brigadier and division commander (back when he actually [b]could[/b] kick ^_^).

And I’m a “she”, thankyouverymuch.

A lady going by the ‘nym of Lucario?

Be careful: my daughter might start hero-worshipping you, as Lucario is one of her favorite Pokemon. 😉

Doubtless the result of Paranoia, but can you blame the paranoid, especially with the very close and unrepentant association of “Reproductive Health Movements” with people who were quite explicit about their eugenic agenda?

Indeed, if it’s not the case now, control of the composition and level of the population is a damned good idea. One whose idea, sooner or later, will come again – though no doubt it’s manifestations will be more sophisticated, it will never become less tempting.

Timothy Zakk: The whole ‘Margaret Sanger was a racist’ meme was invented out of whole cloth by your friends in the anti-choice (or more accurately ‘no-choice’ movement.) You do know that women don’t generally want to spend their whole reproductive lives pregnant, right? Probably not. I imagine you’re a fine upstanding church-going man with a wife who’s frightened of her own shadow.
Giving women the power to control their own reproduction is a good idea, because then they can go to school and have careers. And a more educated populace leads to less poor people, higher standards of living, fewer epidemics, and a reduced child mortality rate. But then again, religious people don’t like educated populaces, because it means less butts in the seats. And girls getting educated? That’s the only thing fundamentalist Muslims, Christians and Jews would all agree on- they’re perpetually against it. I imagine you are too.

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