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SB 276 is now law, and antivaxers are not the “new civil rights movement”

While trying to block SB 276 from becoming law yesterday, antivaxers proclaimed themselves the “new civil rights movement.” They aren’t. Quite the opposite, in fact. Fortunately, SB 276 is now law, their attempts at civil disobedience notwithstanding.

The endgame has come and gone. SB 276, the bill that would take care of the major defect in SB 277, the California law passed in the wake of the Disneyland measles outbreak in 2015 that eliminated nonmedical “personal belief” exemptions to school vaccine mandates, is now law, but not before a lot of attempts by antivaxers to stop it. Without going into a lot of detail, given how many times I’ve written about it, that deficiency in SB 277 was one that saw as soon as the bill passed the California legislature and was signed into law. Unfortunately, SB 277 permits basically any physician to write a letter claiming a medical exemption to school vaccine mandates for a patient, rather than requiring state oversight to make sure that only medically valid medical exemptions were granted. Predictably, the antivaccine quacks in California saw this loophole as an opportunity. It wasn’t long before quacks started selling bogus medical exemptions for antivaccine or vaccine-hesitant parents, claiming all sorts of scientifically unsupportable “indications.” Some even did it online, and in the Bay area five doctors wrote one-third of the medical exemption letters. Thus was born SB 276 to tighten up the medical exemption progress. (I’ll tell you how in a moment.) As a result, antivaxers have gone absolutely wild, portraying themselves as the “new civil rights movement” and cranking up the demonstrations to 11, particularly in a raucous protest yesterday in which the interfered with the functioning of the California legislature.

Before I discuss yesterday’s events, there is much to discuss about SB 276 and the political shenanigans around it. Unfortunately, those shenanigans came from California Governor Gavin Newsom. You see, SB 276 actually passed the legislature a week ago, but even before the Senate passed the bill, sending it to his desk, Gov. Newsom started signaling that he wasn’t happy with the bill as passed and wanted changes, thus throwing its signing into doubt. Ultimately, the bill became law, but Gov. Newsom didn’t exactly cover himself in glory in the process.

The long strange road from SB 276 to “the new civil rights movement” begins

Here’s a brief recounting of the long strange history of SB 276. In response to the problem of antivaccine-sympathetic doctors writing bogus medical exemptions, Senator Richard Pan, who had co-sponsored SB 277 and was the driving force behind getting it passed, introduced SB 276. In brief, SB 276 would mandate a database of medical exemptions, so that the state can keep track of which doctors are issuing the most medical exemptions, and require that requests for medical exemptions to school vaccine mandates be approved by the State Public Health Officer or designee, who could reject exemptions not supported by science.

The bill as passed would also require the department to annually review immunization reports from schools, to identify schools with an overall immunization rate of less than 95%, physicians and surgeons who submitted 5 or more medical exemption forms in a calendar year, and schools and institutions that do not report immunization rates to the department. It would also require a clinically trained staff member who is a physician, surgeon, or a registered nurse to review all medical exemptions meeting these conditions, authorizing the State Public Health Officer to review the exemptions identified by that staff member as fraudulent or inconsistent with established guidelines. The department can report physicians issuing fraudulent or scientifically unjustified medical exemptions to the state medical board. Other important changes to the law in SB 276 include provisions that: (1) require physicians issuing a medical exemption to actually see and examine the child; (2) require physicians who are not the child’s primary care physician to notify that child’s primary care physician when they issue an exemption; (3) require physicians to use a state form that requires them to clearly address the specific contraindications to vaccination being invoked; (4) bar physicians demanding a separate charge for writing an exemption, although of course they can charge for the office visit during which they evaluate and examine the child.

This was the result of a compromise with Gov. Newsom in June. Instead of requiring the California Department of Public Health to approve all medical exemption requests, Newsom demanded that SB 276 narrow its focus to reviewing medical exemption requests from doctors who write five or more medical exemptions in a year and to requests coming from schools or day cares with immunization rates of less than 95%. It did water the bill down somewhat, but wasn’t a horrible compromise. Once those changes were made, Gov. Newsom said that he would “absolutely sign” the bill when it hit his desk.

So it was that Gov. Newsom’s move surprised backers of the bill, because previously Gov. Newsom had signaled that he would sign the bill once it was passed by the legislature:

Medical groups and a lawmaker behind California legislation to crack down on vaccine exemptions said Wednesday they were surprised by Gov. Gavin Newsom’s last-minute call for changes to the bill, a move that inserted fresh uncertainty into one of the year’s most contentious issues.

It was the second time the Democratic governor sought to change the measure aimed at doctors who sell fraudulent medical exemptions for students, a proposal vehemently opposed by anti-vaccine activists. After expressing hesitancy with the bill and winning substantial changes to the measure in June, Newsom had committed to signing it.

The Governor shocked SB 276 supporters with these two Tweets right after the Labor Day holiday weekend:

What did it mean? And why was Newsom asking for more changes to a bill that he had previously indicated that he would sign, after having already insisted on changes that watered the bill down in June?

After going back on his promise June, Newsom demanded more changes:

Newsom’s new demands go further than his initial amendments accepted by Pan and legislative leaders. One change would ensure that the state will not review medical exemptions granted before January 2020. That has stirred fears that it’ll lead to a mad rush on medical exemptions this year that state public health authorities won’t be able to retroactively scrutinize.

The governor also wants to strike SB 276 language that would require doctors to sign under penalty of perjury that they are not granting exemptions for financial gain.

Pan and other lawmakers were stunned by the late amendment request, which came on Twitter only a few minutes after the last major opportunity to amend the bill in the Assembly. With SB 276 headed to Newsom’s desk, the Legislature would have to insert the governor’s changes into a separate bill.

So why would Gov. Newsom go back on his word? It’s a reversal that could really harm him in future dealings with the legislature:

Political strategists from both parties say Newsom’s late tactics represent a remarkable political mistake for the new governor that could potentially harm his reputation and dampen his ability to govern.

“When you give your word and you make a deal, you’ve got to stand by it,” said Democratic strategist Dana Williamson, longtime adviser to former Gov. Jerry Brown. “Otherwise people will think twice the next time he says there’s a deal.”

Williamson said even if the governor learned new information or had a revelation about concerns over the policy, there are avenues like legislative “cleanup” bills to address outstanding issues. She also said announcing his reservations on Twitter was not the best course of action.

“I do think he could have picked up the phone,” Williamson said.

Rob Stutzman, a Republican strategist and former adviser to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, said Newsom risks making enemies in the Legislature. He and Williamson couldn’t think of a similar situation faced by Brown or Schwarzenegger.

Reaction to Newsom’s flip-flop from mainstream media sources was virtually all very negative. I, too, wondered what the heck was going on. Did Newsom or his wife have friends or family who thought their children had been injured by vaccines? Did they know antivax quacks who wrote bogus medical exemptions? Is there a big donor who’s an antivaxer? What made him change his mind? It certainly wasn’t a good look.

Fortunately, by last week’s end, an agreement was struck. In brief, the Governor agreed to sign SB 276 as long as the changes he wants are passed in a second bill, SB 714; Gov. Newsom will sign both bills into law at the same time. The agreement is definitely a mixed bag. Unfortunately, it includes Gov. Newsom’s mind-numbingly bad idea to grandfather in all existing medical exemptions before January 1, 2020, which will definitely spark a panicked gold rush for vaccine exemptions over the next three and a half months. SB 714 will also unfortunately remove a provision in SB 276 that would have required doctors to certify that medical exemptions are accurate, under penalty of perjury. (It’s almost as though Gov. Newsom doesn’t want any quack doctors to face penalties for perjury.) It would appear, though, that Sen. Pan wrung some concessions from Gov. Newsom. For example:

However, Newsom’s amendment contains a key caveat: New medical exemptions would be required when a child enters kindergarten, seventh grade or changes schools. By adding that provision, permanent medical exemptions would no longer be valid throughout a child’s K-12 education. A similar approach was used when the state eliminated personal belief exemptions in 2015 under another bill by Pan that allowed immunization waivers to remain valid until a child reached kindergarten, seventh grade or changed schools.

There is also one new provision in SB 714 that actually improves SB 276. It’s a provision I wholeheartedly approve of:

SB 714, which is also written by Pan, would invalidate any medical exemption from a doctor who has faced disciplinary action by the state medical board.

Sears, who is currently subject to a 35-month probation order issued by the medical board in a vaccine case that did not involve school medical exemptions, expressed disbelief over the amendments released Friday.

“[This bill would] mean that any exemption written by a doctor who has been disciplined by the board for any reason, even one unrelated to vaccination, will be subject to revocation,” Sears said. “So the hundreds of patients I’ve written exemptions for over the past four years after having a severe vaccine reaction will lose their exemptions. This seems like a broad overreach from a government that is supposed to protect its medically fragile children.”

So, yes, the compromise is very much a mixed bag, but that’s politics, I guess. Certainly, the law in California governing school vaccine mandates will be improved after passage of SB 276 and SB 714 compared to before, but, man, the process was ugly and the Governor’s meddling was depressing to behold. It also set the stage for the antivaccine protest today, where antivaxers donned the mantle of the civil rights movement to press their complaint.

Antivaxers disrupt the California Capitol Building

The good news is that Sen. Pan won. SB 714 passed the Assembly and the Senate yesterday, and Gov. Newsom signed both SB 276 and SB 714 into law:

California will enact sweeping new restrictions on medical exemptions for vaccines under bills signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom on Monday, despite near-constant protests in the state Capitol that resulted in arrests after opponents blocked entrances to the statehouse and temporarily shut down legislative sessions.

Newsom signed Senate Bill 276 by Sen. Richard Pan (D-Sacramento) soon after the state Legislature gave final approval to a separate bill, SB 714, that contained fixes sought by the governor.Newsom also signed SB 714.

Together the two bills would create state oversight of medical exemptions for vaccines required to attend public and private schools, as well as day care centers.

On Monday, the Senate passed AB 714 27-11, while the Assembly approved it 43-14. After the vote in the Assembly, protesters shut down the floor session with chants of “protect our children” as lawmakers hurriedly left the chamber. The Legislature passed SB 276 last week.

Congratulations, California! You’ve protected your children and shut down a quack cottage industry. It’s a shame that it won’t happen right away, but politics is the art of the possible.

Antivaxers were ready and descended on the California Capitol yesterday. It was all over Twitter, as I’ll show. Leading up to the protests there were a number of racist memes, Tweets, and posts about Sen. Pan:

Of course, as I documented before, Sen. Pan was even physically assaulted a couple of weeks ago, as well as a heated demonstration a few days later, with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Del Bigtree in full form riling up the crowd. Here’s a typical Facebook post advertising the event:

Then yesterday:

Entrances were blocked and proceedings were delayed at the California Capitol on Monday as people protested legislation that would limit medical exemptions for vaccines. Gov. Gavin Newsom signed the bills — Senate Bill 276 and Senate Bill 714 — into law Monday evening. The protests took place Monday morning and then later in the day during state Senate proceedings.

More on Twitter:

This particular Tweet caught my eye, particularly the sign proclaiming the antivaxers the “new civil rights movement.” All I could think was: Bloody hell, antivaxers proclaiming themselves the “new civil rights movement” again? Can these white, mostly affluent clueless wonders be any more oblivious to their privileged position in society? Notice the paucity of persons of color. That crowd is as white as a Trump rally.

Don’t believe me? Here’s more:

And:

Although in fairness, there is one African-American woman in the video above.

Still, it was an amazingly display of lack of self-awareness, in which overwhelmingly white, affluent, privileged people have the temerity to liken themselves to the civil rights movement. Of course, antivaxers do so love to liken themselves to oppressed minorities. If it isn’t the “new civil rights movement,” it’s Jews during the Holocaust, slaves, rape victims, and just about any persecuted group you can think of. Whenever I see antivaxers doing that, I like to say that these clowns have no idea what real persecution is, and I hope for their sake that they never do.

I mentioned the racism aimed at Sen. Pan earlier. That wasn’t the only racism on display. In the days leading up to the rally, there was this:

I’m not sure where Denise Marie, who welcomed the “Oath Keepers” got the idea that this group was the Oath Keepers. They’re not. They appear to be the California State Militia, specifically, the California State Militia, First Regiment, California Valley Patriots and the State of Jefferson. This is nearly as bad:

We are a garrison of concerned citizen soldiers dedicated to our Constitution and standing united in the defense of our country from all enemies, be they foreign or domestic. CSM covers the entire state of California with 4 Companies: Alpha, Bravo, Charlie and Delta. As a unit, we stand at the ready to both support and reinforce the efforts of law enforcement and organized military forces in the civil defense of our nation, our state, our cities and neighborhoods, and most importantly the defense of our families. Once rostered, you can train individually or choose to work with other militiamen at regularly scheduled drills. The training, inspired by the original Minutemen, will be geared at familiarization with to include: Light Infantry Operations Marksmanship Land Navigation First Aid Wilderness Search and Rescue The “grassroots” defense of our nation is every citizen’s responsibility.

Militias exist because volatile young white men drawn to antigovernment extremist beliefs create them and join them. Not surprisingly, militias tend to have white nationalist leanings, and California State Militia is no different. It takes part in “border operations” to stop undocumented immigrants from crossing the border. For example, last year, in response to the migrant caravan making its way through Mexico from Central America to the US border, the California State Militia took place in a “border watching” exercise with patriot groups, including Minutemen and Oathkeepers, a right wing white supremacist group.

In a 2016 article on the California State Militia:

The movement is bound together by a shared disdain for the federal government, but individual members’ motivations for joining can vary widely. “We all have different reasons to be here,” Captain Clyde Massengale of the Californ­ia State Militia’s Delta Company told the new recruits at my first training. “Some might believe what is happening is something biblical right now. Some might believe it’s the New World Order. Some might believe the New World Order is making what is happening follow the Bible. Who the fuck knows? Who the fuck cares?” Come what may, the militia would be ready. When shit hit the fan, it would have a secret, fortified bugout location where we could bring our families. A new community might someday need to be built there. Massengale said that under his command, life in the bugout would be modeled after ancient Rome. Active, patched members of the California State Militia would be considered citizens, while lapsed members and outsiders would not.

Clyde Massengale of the California State Militia chimed in on the comments of this video that he doesn’t know of Oath Keepers support the antivaccine rally, but that the California State Militia was behind the antivaxers:

Then, elsewhere:

Yes, antivaxers chanted “All lives matter,” because of course they did. Remember that “all lives matter” is a phrase based on a misunderstanding of “Black Lives Matter,” whose purpose as a retort is to dismiss the concerns of the Black Lives Matter movement and take the focus away from the concerns of African-Americans and police violence. That’s not what I consider the “new civil rights movement.” Of course, the irony is that, when it comes to infectious disease, all lives do matter, but antivaxers apparently don’t think the lives of those who need legitimate medical exemptions to school vaccine mandates matter, given how they don’t care if they degrade herd immunity and make the likelihood of outbreaks higher. Basically, antivaxers chanting “All lives matter” is both racist, an indication of their obliviousness, and ironic in the worst way possible when it comes to infectious disease.

Some more scenes from the protests show how chaotic it got at times:

No, these are not members of a new “civil rights movement.” There is no “right” to endanger others. Also, children are not the property of the parents. They are autonomous beings, with rights of their own, one of which is the right to proper medical and preventative care. Parents have no right endanger their children or others, and claiming that doing so is something a “new civil rights movement” needs to fight for dishonors the real civil rights movement. I’m sure we’ll see more of the same today and this week during more protests by antivaxers. In fact, now that SB 276 and SB 714 are actually law, it wouldn’t surprise me if antivaxers crank up the rhetoric into dangerous, violent territory.

I’ll just conclude by congratulating Sen. Pan and everyone who worked to pass SB 276 and then later SB 714. Kudos to the state government for not letting a fringe group cranks with delusions of being civil rights warriors stop them from passing these laws to protect California’s children.

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]

139 replies on “SB 276 is now law, and antivaxers are not the “new civil rights movement””

Aarrgghhh!! Should’ve guessed the peace wouldn’t last. Anyway, where do I start? Yeah — here….

Still, it was an amazingly display of lack of self-awareness, in which overwhelmingly white, affluent, privileged people have the temerity to liken themselves to the civil rights movement

Are we seeing racism and stereotyping from Orac? Yes, the protesters are predominantly white, but what grounds does Orac have to conclude that they are also predominantly affluent and privileged? Can he not entertain that some of these protesters may have less ‘flashy’ jobs — waitresses, secretaries, cashiers, etc Perhaps some may even be stay at home moms, and many struggling with vaccine injured kids.

Second, I would say it’s also racist to think white, affluent, privileged people can’t be oppressed. Truth is, they can be oppressed by other white and even more supper affluent, privileged people. And indeed, as I explained, this how I see the vaccination war evolving. That vaccines are not so ‘safe and effective’ is now merely a poorly held secret. It’s starting not to matter much. All that matters now is the less that 1%ers attempting to shaft the rest.

<That vaccines are not so ‘safe and effective’ is now merely an substantiated bit of uninformed crap I choose to repeat

Fixed your comment.

Orac describes anti-vaxxers as affluent because research/ polls have shown this to be the case. The places where low rates of exemption occur are predominantly affluent areas ( Marin, Sonoma, Orange counties amongst them- are expensive to live in- check out home prices In towns in these places courtesy of Zillow)
If a woman can drive to Sacramento from Southern CA ( as many in the videos reported) and spend the day ( or days) she must have money. “Stay-at-home” mothers usually have other sources of income so they can, in fact, stay at home
White affluent people can be “oppressed” but usually they have the means to counter that legally or can take other measures- such as quitting a terrible job or getting legal assistance/
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Questioning the “safety and efficacy of vaccines is not based on reality: it is delusion. There, I said it.
Look up what “delusion” means.

Not that Orac was being classist but this would be classism not racism.

class·ism
/ˈklasˌizəm/
noun
prejudice against or in favor of people belonging to a particular social class.

Pan, Chuang, and Switzer were born in the US. Yen was born in Taiwan. Pan and Chuang were born to Taiwanese parents.

I can’t find any info on Eve Switzer’s family background because she is not a politician.

The irony of someone accusing a trio of Taiwanese of being secret agents for the People’s Republic is Dunning-Kruger to the fourth power.

People who compare themselves to Jews in WWII, suffer from something worse than Dunning-Kruger. I suppose these people have never read a historybook or learned anything about history. Or they have just read a bit about US history but nothing else. But don’t make comparisons with things you know nothing about.

Malignant Narcissism, primarily, served with a treacle soup of passive-aggressiveness and a really sweet little earner doing Munchausen by Proxy on the side. #DiseasePerverts

Joshua “we’re not violent but let’s cosplay protest in the mask of a violent terrorist from a movie” Coleman had a disturbing Facebook post yesterday on his page:

Gavin signed the bills. He’s currently at 1500 11 street, Sacramento CA

If you are in Sacramento head there NOW!

Posters were urging him and others to disrupt an event the Governor was attending and demanding live video. Someone posted they were locket out (GOOD!).

These anti-vaxxers are uncivil, and they are against the rights of children to grow up healthy and protected from dangerous/deadly disease. On the bright side, I do think their tantrums are hurting their cause.

Whenever the anti-vaxxers start chanting during a legislative session (which has happened a lot lately!), it reminds me of one of my children having a tantrum. You try your best to ignore them while you go about your business.

Actually, banging on walls and stomping is also what my seven year old does sometimes when I send him to his room for a time out. There are a lot of parallels between children and anti-vaxxer behavior!

The Force Awakens is an excellent Star Wars movie!
I think you meant something like “The Star Wars Christmas Special” or “Spaceballs”. Actually, those don’t work either as they are both still closer to Star Wars than anti-vax is to the Civil Rights Movement.

Oh gawd no. The idea was good, the characters were good, the execution was utter crap. They realized the edit button exists for Rogue One and made a good movie! Then they forgot about it again for Last Jedi… except Last Jedi didn’t even have a good idea behind it.

Anyway, the Christmas Special is delightfully batsht, unlike anti-vaxxers, who are un-delightfully batsht.

They’re planning to continue to protest in the Capitol all week.

By the way, one of the changes to SB276 changed the requirement to notify the treating physician to one to explain why the treating physician isn’t writing the exemption. I think it’s about as good.

(Just taffy the bill in public health law class, as part of covering the state legislative process, and we went into the details).

Denise Marie, by the way, is Latina, and there is a small segment of them, just as I’m sure there are some who aren’t affluent, but that doesn’t change the overall group’s privileged status. It skews affluent.

Yep. And it’s really odd bedfellows, too, Denise teaming up with the xenophobic white nationalist California State Militia. This is a group that reams up with the white supremacist Oath Keepers to cosplay soldiers and has been known to “patrol” the southern border with them looking for brown people trying to cross.

OK, I missed that change. I disagree, though. It’s a really bad change, because primary care docs are the last defense against bogus medical exemptions. They can’t stop them if they don’t know about them.

Agree re treating physician. But an explanation about why the treating physician isn’t the one writing the exemptions can raise many red flags for the people doing the oversight. So we take from one mechanism of review, but we make another’s job easier.

Possibly. Time will tell. I mean, it doesn’t raise a red flag to me if a pediatric oncologist writes an exemption. They take care of lots of immunosuppressed kids. Ditto rheumatologists. But almost any other specialty…red flag.

I support the right to protest, even disruptive, non-violent protest. If you curb the right of people to do it for stupid reasons, eventually valid reasons are also curbed. But dang is this a stupid reason.

I also raised an eyebrow at Sear’s comment. If he’s worried about hundreds losing their exemptions, he’s admitting to being the antivax version of a pill mill doctor. The only way to have hundreds of exemptions over four years is if he’s only seeing patients for only exemptions, not actually serving as their doctor. And if this will cause them all to lose their exemptions outright, then he’s admitting that other doctors aren’t going to find Sear’s reasoning for the exemption to be valid.

I do feel bad for the tiny number of families who may find their valid exemption yanked out from under them in the future when their doctor is discplined for other issues, since this is the US and a visit to a new doctor to get a new exemption is a financial burden, but the blame for that lies with people like Sears.

Yes, I noticed that ‘hundreds of exemptions’ quote, too. So a pediatrician basically admitting to depriving hundreds of children protection from communicable diseases, wow, just…wow.

Re. Terrie, last paragraph: tiny number of families who will have to pay to renew valid exemptions if their doc is disciplined for unrelated reasons:

That can be fixed with a simple change to Obamacare in California, to make those visits billable to the state. Parent takes kid to new doc, who reviews exemption and if valid, renews it, and then sends the bill for the visit to whatever agency. That agency would also review those bills to look for more quackery and raise an alert if needed.

Parents whose kids fall into this category would presumably be notified anyway, that their previous exemptions had been pulled due to their docs being disciplined. So, in the same letter as that notification, would be instructions for renewing valid exemptions at no cost to themselves.

This can probably be done as a change in regulations at a level that will not attract much attention or controversy. The actual costs to the state will be negligible, but the benefit to vulnerable families will be large, in addition to the overall public health benefit. And it will deny antis a potential wedge issue.

Gee, a law controlling fraudulent medical practices – one that is supported by all large and well established health care orgs – is controversial?
Controversial to whom? The quacks engaging in the fraud and their partners in crime, the parents who desire the fraud for their own entitled privilege?
That I can believe.
.
We shall now undoubtedly see a drop in medical exemptions in a couple years. Those doctors recently revealed to be responsible for a large %age of a county’s MEs will also fade away as if by magic through the mere fact that now they have to medically justify their exemptions – which they cannot do.
If that doesn’t provide “med freedumbers” with the evidence that widespread ME fraud was occurring those “med freedumbers” are actually biased members of the pro-fraudulent medical practices and documents club.
I’m looking at you Repubs.
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It also would seem this is the tolling of the retirement bell for Bobby “hundreds of exemptions” Sears…
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Congratulations California and Sen. Pan.

It might take a little longer than a couple of years. Part of the compromise was that exemptions are valid until a school change; e.g. grade school to middle school or middle school to high school (also, if a child changes schools for another reason, such as moving). Still, within a few years…

Yeah.
I was actually thinking about the kindergarten data which should show a near immediate response since exemptions had for daycare/pre-K will not be grandfathered into kindergarten and beyond, and a new ME will be needed to enter kindergarten… unless I misunderstand the law as recently amended (which is possible).
If that is correct, all kindergarten entries after Jan 1 will need a new ME that may be reviewed if the issuing doctor has 5+ MEs or the school has a vaccine uptake <95%.
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I use the kindergarten vaccination rate as a year-over-year instantaneous metric of the trends in child vaccination rates even though the older kids may have a 5 year reprieve due to grandfathering.
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Someone correct me if I’m wrong.

The big natural health e-commerce sites (Mercola and Natural News) are notably silent on SB276. I expect this to change as their readers flip out and demand a cookie cutter copy pasta compilation of previous anti-vaccine screeds. The amount of redundant content they repackage and post is mind boggling.

But I have to wonder how these content creation machines could be caught flat footed. Their most recent articles are from a month or more ago, although Infowars has chimed in on the dangerous suppression of courageous vaccine safety advocates.

I don’t question for a moment that the stakeholders at these websites are fervently anti-vaccine, the losing battle against vaccines has bit into their bottom line. And during the inevitable efforts to overturn this law, they will want to be at the forefront only if they can monetize they participation.

Much of this is informed speculation, but I can speak with certainty that while loyal vaccine safety foot soldiers spend their time hammering away in message boards, these standard bearers are looking for alternative revenue streams and content that is more profitable than the failing war against vaccinations.

There is a reason why their advocacy starts and stops, and why front groups independent from the mothership exist.

These are all analytics driven websites that exist to sell products. Google has been working for years to keep their misinformation as appearing as the first hit for hot button health topics. Recently, they tightened the screws even further.

The danger of wasting a daily lead article on a topic that will get no traction, generate no organic traffic and could potentially lead to yet more negative attention must outweigh the importance of warning of the world about the global extinction event known as SB276.

@ Johnny Polo:

You may be right that they’ll “move on” but Mike Adams has sure used vaccines as a way to incite his followers in the past.
Lately, he is certainly freaking out about politics more than health issues. Also, aliens ( a lecture at a conference) so we’ll see. Check out the numbers next to his articles on his front page a NN, these may point to his new direction. Topics with higher numbers often are repeated .

PRN ( Gary Null) has been banging the drum for anti-vax as well as attacking Wikipedia, Google et al. He has anti-vax celebrities on his shows frequently. Lately, also 9/11 conspiracies.
Mercola may be the smartest of the group: he pursues dietary woo- a good income stream, I’d guess

I imagine that these guys ( and it’s ALL guys) will present whatever leads to increases in income. .

I’m sure you are right and am a bit surprised Adams hasn’t worked himself into a lather about SB276.

He has nothing left to lose. He has been bounced from social media and the days of his articles appearing as the top hits for vitamin D, cancer and vaccines are long gone.

Maybe the vaccine safety advocates don’t make great customers for prepper supplies?

His brand is now just raving about leftist plots and an odd, and frankly disturbing, fixation on the virility and sexual identity of America’s young men.

SB276 would seem to check both of these boxes, at least in his mind.

Mercola is a lot craftier and the website is basically Dr Axe version 2.0. It isn’t quite as anodyne as Axe, but apart from the EMF business, many of his excesses have been curbed.

As an aside, about five weeks ago, I got a nastygram from Gary Null’s lawyer Neal S. Greenfield, Esq. threatening to sue me if I didn’t remove certain content about his client. As is typical with these “cease and desist” nastygrams, Mr. Greenfield didn’t specify which of my posts he considered defamatory (although he did complain about my characterization of a certain infamous incident Mr. Null was a victim of around 9 years ago). He also seemed to be laboring under the delusion that I had written or heavily contributed to the Wikipedia entry about him. (I did not. I’ve never edited Wikipedia. I did set up an account to do so a long time ago, but decided that editing Wikipedia was not where my strengths lie; blogging was—and is. It just goes to show what happens when you start believing your own conspiracy theories.)

So I had my lawyer respond with a letter requesting (1) the title, date, and URL of every post he and his client considered defamatory and (2) the exact passages in each post that he and his client considered defamatory. We heard nothing and assumed that the matter had been dealt with.

Then, last week, I got a FOIA request for my work email account. (Given that I am faculty at a state university, I’m considered a state employee; so my emails are, unfortunately, FOIA-able.) In any case, Mr. Greenfield, Esq. wanted any emails between me and: Paul Offit, Steve Novella, Stephen Barrett, any of the Guerrilla Skeptics, John Entine, Kevin Folta, a couple of people whom I had never heard of before, etc. The hilarious thing, though, is that Mr. Greenfield, Esq. wants any emails I’ve had with Jimmy Wales, the founder of Wikipedia. I laughed out loud at that part. (I suppose I should be flattered that Mr. Greenfield, Esq. and Mr. Null think that I associate with such rarified company.) Hilariously and cluelessly, Mr. Greenfield, Esq. also wanted any communication I might have had with Gary Ruskin of USRTK. Given that I despise Gary Ruskin and USRTK as anti-GMO cranks and propagandists, I laughed out loud at that request too.

I suspect that Mr. Null and Mr. Greenfield, Esq. will be very disappointed when they finally receive the fruits of their FOIA request. I suppose it’s possible that there might be some odd random phrase or two that they can take out of context to try to make me look bad, but I doubt there’s even that. I do hope, however, that my university charges them the maximum allowed by law for their trouble.

@ Orac:

Oh my! Wikipedia is Null’s biggest gripe because of how it uses Dr Barrett’s QW, describes him as an hiv/aids denialist and as having phoney degrees. PRN is rife with anti-Wikipedia, anti-sceptic and anti-SBM articles, in fact there is now even a short film describing how he “cured” aids. Damage control: he has said that the bio affected sales.

Actually, no one needs Wikipedia to learn about him: anyone with half a brain could figure him out merely by listening to him : long lists of accomplishments, research, cures and amazing feats all un-authenticated elsewhere . I know that you wouldn’t write anything unless you could show where you found it and hilariously, most of that is from his own site or show.
Still, I surmise that his credentials are a sore point and he sued Lee Phillips, a physicist, for scoffing at them ( the case was tossed): if anyone were to write about you ( or even me) on Wikipedia, they would include degrees and where they were acquired- which were from accredited, well-known universities– but in his case, dodginess prevails. Similarly, he speaks about being a professor BUT I’ve never seen that in writing anywhere. His preferred bio is a series of videos on PRN which you should view in order to evaluate his relationship to reality.
It’s ironic that he is concerned with how truthful material about him is when he confabulates on a near daily basis- and this is available either in written or recorded form.

“Mr. Greenfield didn’t specify which of my posts he considered defamatory”

“Vagueness in a legal demand is the hallmark of frivolous legal thuggery.”

Mercola may be the smartest of the group: he pursues dietary woo- a good income stream, I’d guess

And he has the sense to outsource the conspiratorial side of his customer-recruitment business to Erin Elizabeth so he doesn’t end up stinking of Trutherdom personally.

Sayer Ji is at it.

Mikey as you say is falling deeper and deeper into the deep end. His target audience are not parents who are leery of being required to give their child a shot of anything.

You’re probably right about Mercola. If he can’t leverage this into a product he’s got no motive.

@ Christine Rose:

Whilst Sayer Ji doesn’t sell products. he does sell memberships at three levels, Friend, Power and Pro ( at respectively, 75, 179 and 849 USD per year) where you get varying access to research, papers etc. True, there are free articles as well. He may use vaccine-centred material in order to entice anti-vaxxers into buying a higher level plan because they ALWAYS do their own research. He highlights articles by RFK ir.

Sayer Ji was wont to copy-paste material from Celeste McGovern, back when she was brave independent journalist staff hack for CMSRI. Now that the CMSRI moneyteat is no more, maybe she will go and write for GreenMedInfo directly.

If these parents truly want to risk the health of their children and not vaccinate, there are better ways of going about doing this than to ally themselves with white nationalists, xenophobes and outright racists. For example, they could just not vaccinate and pay the consequences of not going along with the social contract. They could move to another part of the country where they would not face consequences for placing their children at risk. Or they could try and find a political or legal solution to their predicament.
What impresses me the most is how so many supporters of the current President have written on social media about how Democrats can’t get over the 2016 election, all the while not being able to get over the current improvements to vaccine requirements in their state. They always seem to want it both ways, and will seek out a third way if neither of the two first ways fits with their worldview.
I wrote a blog post for History of Vaccines, documenting the racist and violent rhetoric throughout the history of anti-vaccine groups. Man, people had an allergic reaction to it. I’m getting some interesting emails from anti-vaccine people, angry about me — in their minds — calling them racist. Uh, don’t associate with racists, don’t re-tweet racism memes, and don’t give your money to racists groups if you don’t want to be identified as racist. Just saying.
(Just like you shouldn’t write “rapey” things and then throw a temper tantrum over being called “rapey.”)

I too, wondered what the heck was going on. Did Newsom or his wife have friends or family who thought their children had been injured by vaccines? Did they know antivax quacks who wrote bogus medical exemptions? Is there a big donor who’s an antivaxer? What made him change his mind? It certainly wasn’t a good look.

I said it before and I will say it again, mandates will never save you guys. The simple reason being that you will never completely shut the door, and making things vulnerable to future prying. Worst — even attempting to close the door in one room (state), you will create some serious back drafts in other rooms (states), and where those doors will be flung even wider open. Partisanship especially hurts you guys in this regard.

re California State Militia, Valley Patriots, State of Jefferson!!!!

Last week, I looked at vaccine exemption rates and noticed that some were in “red state” CA**: i.e. conservative mountain areas like Shasta and NE counties who repeatedly try to secede ( also interior areas further south). They voted for Trump… IN CA.
Interesting that they should show up to support left-leaning ladies from coastal suburbs.
I wonder what they talked about other than vaccines? This may prove the old adage that extremes meet somehow.

** I have never set foot in red state CA despite wanting to see particular mountains.

CA is home to some truly far left and some truly far right, and they meet happily in the horseshoe more often than I would have thought.

Whenever I leave my nice blue bubble to take I-5 north to Thunderhill or south to LA, I drive past many THANK YOU PRESIDENT TRUMP banners. They really love their guns ’round here.

“…they meet happily in the horseshoe…”

The horseshoe hypothesis is baloney. Please tell me how many mass killings have been perpetrated by far-leftists in the USA this century, how many law-abiding citizens they have doxxed, etc. Seeing that this number is qualitatively less than the number by (not always even far-) right-wingers, together with the American tradition of left-wing free-speech advocates, QED.

I wonder, is the border area of California home to armadillos?
Maybe these militia guys could have one as a pet. Give it lots of hugs and kisses.

No, that would be mean to the armadillo.

Might have, TBruce, might have.
It’s not nice of me, but frankly militia folks rank way lower in my mind than anti-vaxxers. They’re way more dangerous.

@JustaTech

Antivaxxers are potentially far more dangerous than militias if lack of vaccination leads to another Spanish Flu pandemic.

In related news…

“Hundreds” of parents opposed to NY’s new state law ending religious exemptions gathered both outside the Board of Regents’ meeting in Albany ( TImesUnion; @ highwiretalk) and in chambres as well. They have 14 days from the start of the school year to have their children vaccinated or to pull them out of public schools.
From the newpaper’s images, they looked similar to the CA protestors.
Believe it or not, the East has (somewhat muted) equivalents to “red state” CA in NY and NJ**- rural, conservative with voters who supported Trump but no talk of seceding and forming new states yet.

** some areas are horse country with Trump golf courses too

The NYS Board of Regents have nothing to do with the anti-exemptions law. It was passed by the Senate and Assembly and signed by the governor, and they don’t have a choice but to follow state law. The protesters admitted knowing that, but figured they’d get better publicity than at the state capital building.
They had to take the unprecedented step of locking the main entrance to keep them out.

“I said it before and I will say it again, mandates will never save you guys. The simple reason being that you will never completely shut the door”

You can never completely shut the door on quackery of any kind.* You can however keep the barrier from being so porous that there’s a substantial harm to public health.

SB276’s passage is a step in that direction.

*Insisting that only 100% efficiency in combatting quackery matters, is as fallacious as claiming that since vaccines aren’t 100% effective they aren’t any good at all.

Dangerous One, you missed the second part of what I wrote. Attempting to shut the door, you risk creating backlash that will make things worse, and especially in other states.

Vaccination has succeeded extraordinarily in the past because the public bought into it — hook, line and sinker! Now trying to force vaccines on people will only cause people to think and that will erode the faith. Simply, people thinking is not good for you guys!

Go ahead and delude yourselves that ‘antivaxxers’ look bad protesting SB276, but do you really think the pic of an officer marching a young mother off to jail reflects good on the faith. What will Joe and Joanne public think? We love vaccines but we understand if we were to stop loving them we could get arrested too?

Dangerous One, recently here in NB, provincial leaders held discussions about making vaccines mandatory. It didn’t go well. Parents overwhelmed the panel with their horror stories that even MLA leaders started openly declaring that they were having cold feet. I would say the fierce opposition was in part greatly fueled by people paying attention to what was going on south of the border.

Go ahead and delude yourselves that ‘antivaxxers’ look bad protesting SB276, but do you really think the pic of an officer marching a young mother off to jail reflects good on the faith. What will Joe and Joanne public think? We love vaccines but we understand if we were to stop loving them we could get arrested too?

Oh how you lot love to see yourselves as martyrs. Except this isn’t going to happen and I doubt you Greg, would do anything apart from lifting your fat fingers off the keyboard.

“Vaccination has succeeded extraordinarily in the past because the public bought into it — hook, line and sinker!” Only in your Bizarro World reality. Vaccination has succeeded because IT WORKS. People have “bought into it” because IT WORKS.
Vaccination is probably the oldest successful medical intervention in the world. It has entirely eliminated two disease scourges, and is reducing the incidence of others. Antivax, including your, opposition is based on an understanding of fact that is no different than that of Boko Haram. If antivax sentiment has grown, it is because people like you would rather believe the lies of a disgrace to medicine and science (Andrew Renfield) and the happy horseshit peddled by amoral profiteers.

I just realized that I called Wakefield “Renfield”.
Doesn’t matter much though. Each is just as repulsive as the other.

Now trying to force vaccines on people…

Government enforcement of any policy should always be examined — but decisions should be based on several things, including facts. Objecting to a vaccine mandate simply because of the continual string of lies you and other ant-vacc people toss out about the fictional wide-spread harm they cause is not a valid reason for opposition.

“do you really think the pic of an officer marching a young mother off to jail reflects good”

Given that all of the current pictures of that happening at the border to asylum seekers hasn’t changed anything, no, I don’t think anyone cares anymore.

Or do you mean a young white mother? That people might care then?

Face it, Greg, you’re not a nice person at all.

@ Gregg

Actually, the Supreme Court ruled that people could not be force to vaccinate; but fines and IMPRISONMENT were OK, and the vaccinations were not just required to attend schools, etc; but as member of COMMUNITY (Jacobson v. Massachusetts, 1905). Admittedly, it was for smallpox, a much much more lethal disease than measles, though measles does cause suffering for 7 – 10 days, hospitalizations, disabilities (seizure disorders, mental retardation, deafness, and blindness), and rubella, though almost, not always; but almost always a mild disease, for pregnant women, devastating, almost guaranteed stillbirths, miscarriages, or congenital rubella syndrome (blindness, deafness, mental retardation, microcephaly, and some evidence, Autism), etc. So not vaccinating kids puts any women who becomes pregnant (rubella incubation up to 12 days) or is pregnant at virtually 100% risk for severe consequences for fetus. I wonder how antivaccinationists would feel if they suffered such by being exposed to someone not vaccinated. I guess you would be OK if your wife or girlfriend was exposed to rubella.

We live in communities where we have both rights and responsibilities. Your continuing ignorance of the risks to kids with autoimmune diseases, on chemotherapy, pregnant women, plus your ignorance of the risks from vaccine-preventable diseases and your ignorance of the mass of safety studies that have been carried out around the world, is overwhelming. You Iive in your own fantasy world where you think you are among the chosen few who know the “truth?”

do you really think the pic of an officer marching a young mother off to jail

For someone who admires Trump and his ‘tough’ stance on criminals, notably separating mothers from their children…
Funny how I read you complain about one but not about the others.

Fat fingers? Fat fingers?! Science Mom, haven’t you been told not to judge a person by their appearance. Besides, they’re not fat! They’re full-figured fingers, Science Mom!

Good God, I promised myself not to get caught up in these exchanges. Orac –I beg you! — please do the Bruzinski blog tomorrow!

AoA is running an article/ video that claims that activists in CA have inside information that the Governor and his wife don’t fully vaccinate their children, who have various issues, and would also lose those exemptions.
I would HOWEVER not believe AoA because they deal in conspiracy theories, fear mongering and Super Mom mythology.

In other news:
Autism displays disorganised layers in the cortex: development of this area occurs prenatally. See Eric Courchesne.
Oh wait, that’s OLD news.

These are the same folks who believed the story that Dr. Pan’s kids had medical exemptions…..and when the author of that particular story was finally tracked down (a notorious anti-vax troll), he freely admitted that he just made it up.

Just a bit OT – but I discovered a couple of volunteer Lobelia siphilitica plants in a corner of my garden! From Grieve’s Herbal: “LOBELIA, BLUE (L. Syphilitica)…used in homeopathy…is diaphoretic, emetic and cathartic and has been used in dropsy, diarrhoea, syphilis and dysentery, the root being the part used.”

Who needs Big Pharma? I’m all set to do some local doctorin’.

California’s director of the state Department of Health Care Services resigned today after referring to anti-vaxxers as “flat earthers” on her private Facebook page and using the hashtags “#believeinscience” and “#vaccinateyourgoddamnkids.”

You pointed out that there’s a black person in one rally, but to be fair, in the second tweet from Brian Hickey, the one with people putting red tapes in their mouths, I can make out two people that seem Asian American.

Now and again I check Pan’s twitter for the fanfare and praises for the ‘hero’ that beat back the heathens to push through SB276. Saved for a smattering of supportive tweets things are relatively quiet. On gets the sense of Pan’s ‘supporters’ with strained smiles thanking him in public but things being different in private. Then it’s, ‘Because of you my kid now stands a chance of being in diapers for life. Thank you you f’ing hero!’

Its quite the interesting fantasy world you live in – I guess its easier than having to admit that you’re a piece of trash.

things are relatively quiet

Maybe, for a lot of people, this is a non-issue.
When I see a policeman regulating the car traffic at a crossroad, I am grateful that he is here, but I don’t feel the need to go shake his hand and congratulate him on doing his job at policing society.
Now that you mention it, maybe I should.

How France beat parents’ fear of the measles vaccines ( inews.co.uk) discusses how making vaccines mandatory helped increase the rate of vaccination in France.
Surprisingly, I found this via Del Bigtree ( @ highwiretalk) who uses it for his own purposes. Often anti-vaxxers at RI also link to articles that say quite the opposite of what they intend as we have learned recently.
French readers often talk about measles in their country.

Del Bigtree is Greg’s spirit animal.

Actually, I think Bigtree’s only crime is being that imprudent ‘jerk’ that won’t respect the ‘suspension of disbelief’ and he is constantly talking during the show.

Hey everyone — today is 911! In 50 years, how will commeroate one of the greatest atrocity that ever inflicted humanity — the vaccination holocaust?

Or is the commemoration already ongoing on April 2nds, but in the sickest twistedness we refer to it as ‘awareness, acceptance and celebration’?

That won’t stop them from commemorating it. I recommend the anniversary of the date their martyr AJW was struck off.

In 50 years, how will commeroate one of the greatest atrocity that ever inflicted humanity — the vaccination holocaust?

I hope I’m understanding this garble correctly…

I you want a commemoration, how about May 8, 2030, the 50th anniversary
of the WHO’s declaration that smallpox was eradicated from the world?

That would be worth a celebration .
On the other hand, Greg, you and your buds could mourn the extinction of the poor, poor Variola virus from the wild.

you want a commemoration, how about May 8, 2030, the 50th anniversary
of the WHO’s declaration that smallpox was eradicated from the world?

Very well then TBruce, let’s not be accused of telling a one-sided story. Let’s have our May 8th Smallpox Elimination Day and our April 2nd Vaccination Holocaust Day commemoration. Let’s also not be accused of mincing words. No ‘awareness’, no ‘acceptance’, no ‘celebration’… Just a ‘good’, old-fashioned Vaccination Halocaust commemoration Day. Deal?

Did you really just compare 9/11 to vaccination?

That’s gross, Greg. That is a comparison so utterly devoid of logic, so completely empty of empathy that I’m amazed a human being could type it.

The world was transformed, and not for the better, on that day. A lot of people stepped up and worked for the better and the common good, but it started wars and inflamed bigotry all over the world.

Let me tell you a story Greg. One day the chef at Windows on the World (top floor of the WTC) breaks his glasses and doesn’t have his spare pair. So he rides the elevators all the way down to the street to go get his glasses repaired. He steps out onto the street, looks up, and watches all of his coworkers die in an instant as the first plane hits.

Now, tell me, Greg, how is that like not getting smallpox? How is that like not getting tetanus? How is all that horror and fear and pain and panic and suffering and death like not getting sick?

That’s gross, Greg. That is a comparison so utterly devoid of logic, so completely empty of empathy that I’m amazed a human being could type it.

I’m not at all surprised. This is a guy who would vote for Donald Trump in support of his delusions about vaccines. You remember that one of the first things Trump said publicly after the 9/11 attacks was that HIS building was now the tallest in lower Manhattan.

Kindred spirits, no less.

Did you really just compare 9/11 to vaccination?

Yep. But I will readily admit it’s not a fair comparison. In terms of the costs and devastation wrought by vaccination, 911 doesn’t even amount to a mosquito bite. Oh — and this is irrespective of all your storytelling.

Good Readers of RI, please note here evidence of Greg’s complete and total lack of empathy, sympathy, or care for human life.

Greg compares a terrorist attack that killed more than 3,000 people and started two wars (one of which is still going on 18 years later) to a mosquito bite.
He says that all of that death and destruction is less than the impact of the elimination of a deadly disease.

In addition to being a cruel and uncaring person, Greg is an idiot and a fool. He will not see the world in front of him, and he wishes only to increase the suffering of others.

In 50 years, you STILL won’t have produced any credible evidence to support your claims Greg. You’ll have had time to get educated, to raise funds, to do the research but you won’t have done anything. Preferring, instead, to cry about it and move goalposts. Again.

Orac has frequently discussed how anti-vaxxers cavalierly and unrealistically compare themselves to victims of the Holocaust or Jim Crow/ racism even to Apartheid ( because Andy IS Nelson Mandela AND Jesus);

today at AoA, Kim Rossi enriches her literary portfolio with allusions to back alley exemptions because vaccinating your child is EXACTLY like being legally forced to bear a child because of archaic abortion restrictions.
I wonder how this would transpire: do you meet up with an alcoholic or addicted doctor in an inner city alley and pay him or her to write you a fraudulent exemption?
She has been mis-appropriating # metoo for a long time because women who oppose vaccination are the same as those who are raped, abused or harassed. They are being SILENCED in a POLICE STATE but somehow I seem to hear or read their histrionics and bad science all over the net.

Or the #wedid, which was / is a hashtag dedicated to people getting married.

In his own way, Gerg is just as bad at CK, who using RI to live out some kind of twisted fantasy escapism….and this belief that they “know the truth,” which they think gives them some kind of power in their lives.

The intentions of SB276 were to go after supposed false exemptions written by a handful of doctors.

Doctors under this scrutiny won’t write ANY exemptions.

The results will be de facto mandatory vaccination for all children in the state of California.

What’s accomplished? Thousands of medically frail children thrown out of school because their bodies cannot handle the shots and their exemptions are denied.

Nope. If an exemption is justified by accepted guidelines, there is no reason for a doctor to fear. The only doctors who fear this sort of scrutiny by the state are the ones who were writing medical exemption letters for indications that are not justifiable by science and not accepted by the medical profession.

Also, antivaxers need to get the story straight. They keep regaling us with tales of how unvaccinated children are supposedly healthier. Yet they also claim that their children are so medically fragile that they’ll be irrevocably harmed if they’re vaccinated. Which is it?

I’m never sure if those who compare vaccination to the Holocaust realize how intensely insulting that is to the memory of the millions who died in the Holocaust (and their descendants) or are perfectly aware how obscenely inept that comparison is, but just don’t care.

I’m not at all surprised. This is a guy who would vote for Donald Trump in support of his delusions about vaccines. You remember that one of the first things Trump said publicly after the 9/11 attacks was that HIS building was now the tallest in lower Manhattan.

Dear God, please please don’t make it so that Trump murdered someone in the past! Should information like that surface, TBruce will also have the cops knocking at my door under the suspicion that I said I would vote for Trump over a Democrat.

Anyway drug dealers, let me defend my assertion that considering past and present atrocities, 911 was a drop in the bucket. A while back on these blogs I introduced my atrocity metrics to gauge atrocities. The three measurement indexes that I used were number of victims, severity of suffering, and cost and devastation to society. For these three indexes I rated them mild-1, medium-2, and severe-3. For instance, number of victims in an atrocity ranging from 10,000 to 100,00 scored 1, millions and 10s of millions scored 2, and 100s of millions scored 3. Likewise. on the pain and suffering index, persecution and oppression garnered 1, real physical punishment and attacks on health scored 2, and the extremest suffering in the form of torture, deaths and carnage earned 3. You get the point.

I went on to rate past and present atrocities — Sexism, the Japanese Bombings, the Vaccination Holocaust, and The Great Wars. Sexism for instance scored 7 — number of victims-3(potentially half the world’s population), severity of suffering-2 (mainly oppression but also cases of real physical punishments such as beatings, rape and genital mutilation) and cost to society being-2 (female poverty and inequality, broken families, etc). Not surprisingly, the Vaccination Holocaust was an 8, with number of victims-3 (worldwide autism and ADHD cases alone likely in the 100s of millions), severity of suffering-2 (poor emotional and physical health of many autistic kids, but also cases such as SIDS), and cost to society-3 (the US alone incurring annual autism related costs of 100s of billions). I explained only The Great Wars can be seen as worse than The Vaccination Holocaust, scoring 3 on all indexes and surpassing Vaccination for its extreme carnage.

Drug dealers, no offense to the 911 victims and their families, but in all honesty I would say 911 doesn’t even register on my atrocity scale. Indeed individuals jumping to their deaths from buildings or victims getting burned alive count as severe sufferings but relatively to other atrocities we are dealing with merely 3,000 plus victims. People the world over get skinned alive, beheaded, stoned to death and so on, do we consider their individual cases atrocities? Indeed 911 was bad, but I honestly don’t think it’s right to consider it as ranking as one of the worst atrocities, and largely because it was an attack on US soil.

Greg, the problem with what you are saying, leaving aside the execrable morality, is that you are making a false comparison – comparing apples with oranges as the saying goes. This is because both 9/11 and the holocaust are well-documented events that had far-reaching consequences that have been widely studied and are therefore historically verifiable, however the ‘vaccine holocaust’, despite numerous studies, has no verifiable documentation and therefore the only possible conclusion is that it exists only in the minds of its believers. You are comparing history with fiction – possibly science fiction to be more precise, nonetheless, it is beyond doubt that the ‘vaccine holocaust’ of which you speak has not occurred in actual, real, life.

Also, his first metric starts with 10,000 people. That conveniently pushes under the rug many events which would count as atrocities.
Even if it was ‘from 0 to 100,000’, one wonders about the established thresholds. I mean, when some entity manages to kill or maim hundred of thousands, and another entity scores millions, do these two really belong to two different categories?
At some point, I stop comparing the piles of corpses and I just put Pinochet, Pol Pot and Stalin in the same bag.
It’s as if these metrics were designed to give the highest score with his ‘vaccination holocaust’ and lower scores with about anything else.

Also, the death toll of 9/11 may well be now in the 10 of thousands, if counting the first responders who contacted deadly lung diseases from the clouds of debris.
Some foreigners may argue that the count is in the 10 of millions, counting all the casualties from the US little endeavors into Iraq and Afghanistan. Although it may be a little unjust to blame those on 9/11 plane hijackers, as the decisions to invade these countries was solely the responsibility of the Bush administration.

Carl and Athaic: I agree.
To borrow a phrase, this is fairy tale science **: you create a set of categories or metrics and then fill them in to prove your point just like you can study how much money the tooth fairy leaves for different types of teeth or to different kids but despite your reckoning it doesn’t mean that the fairy exists.
Why those categories? Because they fit preconceived notions to illustrate how a confabulated catastrophe, using imagined numbers of cases, measures up amongst REAL tragedies like wars, genocide and terrorism, Why not a category that includes how the event led to later governmental changes in security around the world and the associated costs- that would be relevant to 9/11 and wars or terrorism ( NATO cost money, the Marshall Plan cost money, Homeland Security etc).

To believe in a “vaccine holocaust” ( I don’t even like typing that) you would have to believe that doctors, researchers, professors, periodicals, universities, governmental agencies and governments all around the world are lying and fixing data for decades and that a few iconoclasts/ mavericks are revealing all- and who are these people- angry mothers and doctors who have had financial motives.

Today, at AoA, a guy compares 9/11 and NY, CA and ME laws. Kim introduces him: ” We are Davids among Goliaths”

** Dr Harriet Hall

You think mosquito bites are trivial? Mosquitoes historically have inflicted malaria, dengue, West Nile virus, chikungunya, yellow fever, filariasis and others, with total deaths in the hundreds of millions just for malaria alone. Yet, you consider it to be a drop in the bucket. So much for your rating system.

We have some mosquitoes here in Massachusetts who will be happy to give you Eastern Equine Encephalitis. Come on in!

Heck, one of my dad’s favorite books is literally titled “The Mosquito: A Human History of Our Deadliest Predator.”

Justatech:In aIn addition to being a cruel and uncaring person, Greg is an idiot and a fool. He will not see the world in front of him, and he wishes only to increase the suffering of others.ddition to being a cruel and uncaring person, Greg is an idiot and a fool. He will not see the world in front of him, and he wishes only to increase the suffering of others.

Sadly,this is bog standard for anti-vaxxers. Greg’s just a louder and oinkier example than most. Most of them don’t even care about their kids.

Greg: Give it up. You don’t give a darn about women. I’m glad your ‘wife and daughter’ are imaginary. No woman should have to put up with your constant oinking.

I mean, when some entity manages to kill or maim hundred of thousands, and another entity scores millions, do these two really belong to two different categories?

But indeed we grade atrocities, and we just don’t lump them all as equal. Who here will say 911 was just as ‘bad’ as the Japanese Bombings? No one will and that’s because we have criteria (weird that criteria is plural and criterion is singular). Whether you.agree with my specific criteria or metrics that is a separate matter but we still have them.

TBruce, you know the funny thing about the Vaccination Holocaust and how it pertains to my atrocity scale? It’s actually how little there is in dispute.

We know autism and ADHD cases are likely in the 100s of millions worldwide. We know these kids suffer profoundly — emotionally and physically, shortened life spans, SiDs, and so on. We know caring for these kids is quite taxing on parents and communities, actually devastating! These things are not in dispute, TBruce. The only thing in dispute is whether they are caused by vaccines.

It’s a sticking point that may eventually prove me to be a deranged lunatic, or you, a genocidal supporting monster. I am confident and at peace with the side of the coin I believe I fall on TBruce. You?

It’s a sticking point that may eventually prove me to be a deranged lunatic, or you, a genocidal supporting monster. I am confident and at peace with the side of the coin I believe I fall on TBruce. You?

That’s the thing about delusions – they are held with sheer confidence by the delusional, with no connection to reality.
My opinion is based on evidence. Give me good evidence that vaccines are responsible for a Vaccine Holocaust, and I will gladly change my mind. I am confident in my opinion, however, because the evidence so far solidly supports it.

Greg, you are remarkably foolish. Vaccines harm very few and save so many. You have not (can not) present verifiable evidence to the contrary.

You imagine a world where vaccines kill millions and, of course, help no one. Delusional harly scratches the surface of your idiocy.

Orac writes,

There is no “right” to endanger others.

MJD says,

In the realm of immunizations, the non-static risk/benefit ratio is intended to achieved an outcome wherein a vast majority of individual’s are substantially free of endangerment. When vaccines are mandatory, continuous improvement is of vital importance.

Julian Frost writes: “Michael, continuous improvement of vaccines is constantly happening.”

MJD says: I agree.

Julian writes: “You really are ignorant.”

MJD says: That’s why I’m a vaccine safety advocate and NOT antivaccine.

In the realm of immunizations, the non-static risk/benefit ratio is intended to achieved [sic] an outcome wherein a vast majority of individual’s [sic] are substantially free of endangerment. When vaccines are mandatory, continuous improvement is of vital importance.

I’m vaguely curious about what type of pudding occupies your brainpan. Tapioca? Instant pistachio? Ram’s balls?

Greg: We know autism and ADHD cases are likely in the 100s of millions worldwide. We know these kids suffer profoundly — emotionally and physically, shortened life spans, SiDs, and so on.

You know nothing about ADD/ADHD. Actually, you don’t know anything about a lot of things, so I’ll clue you in on this: ADD and ADHD don’t affect the life span one bit. Please do some research, rather than repeating what your ignorant friends say and whatever farts fly out from your rear. Have you ever considered auditioning for ‘America’s Got Talent? A talking ass might do well on that show. ( I wish that word wasn’t linked to actual animals. I feel bad for insulting the donkeys and mules.)

And even more heresy…

Truth be told, the Vaccination Holocaust is worse than the Jewish Holocaust. Let’s revisit my atrocity scale…

Jewish Holocaust: Number of victims-2 (10s of millions), severity of suffering-3 (extreme carnage), devastation to society-2 (devastating but only occurring in one locality over a relatively short period of time). Total score-7

Vaccination Holocaust: Number of victims-3 (100s of millions worldwide cases), severity of suffering=2, devastation to society (costing 100s of billions in the US alone but also ongoing and worldwide). Total score -8

From vaccine court website:
“According to the CDC, from 2006 to 2017 over 3.4 billion doses of covered vaccines were distributed in the U.S. For petitions filed in this time period, 6,467 petitions were adjudicated by the Court, and of those 4,450 were compensated. This means for every one million doses of vaccine that were distributed, approximately one individual was compensated.”
One would guess that a holocaust victim would file a complaint. No millions here, though.

One would guess that a holocaust victim would file a complaint. No millions here, though.

TWO points….

First, how many Germans after the War said, we honestly didn’t know what was going on.

Second, what percentage of Holocaust claims does the CDC already concede gets.reported?

I did not speak about germans, I spoke about victims. Why they they do not file a claim ? Losing does not cost anything.
And CDC has nothing to do with holocaust, so it does obviously do not pay anything

Lenin and Stalin, those were extremists. While both surely were unreasonably confident in their beliefs, and remarkably quick to sacrifice others for them, those beliefs were not poofed out of nowhere, as Greg’s are. No, Greg’s gig is even more fanatic than fanaticism; he is willing to oppress, harass, and maybe even kill over non-existent issues, crazy paranoid fantasies

Good Gawd RJ, please re-read this tripe that you wrote! Wait — read it again! What – is Management now buying you guys drama coaches?

RJ, if I were to meet you in person, I wouldn’t kill you. How would I go about that anyway? I would just settle for the satisfaction of calling you a lying shill to.your face.

If we ever do face another Influenza Pandemic (or worse, some new cross-over virus – like what we are beginning to see in South Asia and Australia, from bats), it will be interesting to see how anti-vaxers react….if folks are dropping in the streets – do they run to get vaccinated (if one should be available), or do they take their chances?

We’ve been very lucky not to have been faced with something similar to the Spanish Flu (though the LGBTQ community had their own version, when HIV was rampant & thousands were dying of AIDS), but its only a matter of time before it happens again.

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