Categories
Antivaccine nonsense Autism Medicine Skepticism/critical thinking

Del Bigtree wastes the CDC’s time during the COVID-19 pandemic with an abusive FOIA lawsuit

In the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, antivaxxer Del Bigtree wastes the CDC’s time with an abusive FOIA request and lawsuit to dishonestly claim that there’s no evidence some vaccines don’t cause autism.

A longstanding weapon that cranks like to wield against defenders of science is the dishonest Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. At the federal lever, the FOIA was intended to make it possible for citizens to hold their government accountable by being able to obtain documents, with relatively few restrictions. Indeed, most states now have a version of FOIA covering state government documents. Unfortunately, FOIA requests have been weaponized against scientists working for federal institutions and state universities. I myself have been at the receiving end of such abusive FOIA requests myself. Last year, Gary Null’s lawyer demanded my emails with Dorit Reiss, Dr. Steve Novella, Stephen Barrett, Jon Entine, Dr. Paul Offit, and others, as I documented. He got the emails a while back but to my knowledge hasn’t published any of them. (I did publicly warn him that there was nothing interesting, nefarious, or even particularly embarrassing there. I’m guessing he’s very disappointed.) I’m not alone, either. Quite a few pro-science advocates have been targeted, be it by antivaxxers, climate science denialists, or others.

Last week, Del Bigtree was practically crowing with delight on his latest episode of Highwire with Del Bigtree. (I’m not going to embed the video; you can click on the link if you’re really interested and can stomach Bigtree’s channeling of Alex Jones.) The reason was that he had “won” a lawsuit over an abusive FOIA request that he’d filed with the CDC. My first thought reading and watching his preening self-congratulation and propagandizing was: How despicable to waste the CDC’s time like this as the coronavirus pandemic was hitting American shores. Of course, Bigtree loves this shtick. For instance, last year, he used abusive FOIA requests to obtain information about the studies used to license the MMR and proceeded to do what he does best: Misrepresent and twist them. The same sort of thing is going on here, except that Bigtree is misrepresenting science (as always) and the law (as usual). Thankfully, Dorit Reiss has already written about the legal issues and some of the science, and Vincent Ianelli has written about some of the science. There is, however, always room for the arrogant blinky clear box of multicolored lights to weigh in in his own inimitable fashion in order to lay down some not-so-Respectful Insolence. (Given his history of deception and disinformation, Bigtree doesn’t merit Respectful Insolence.)

So let’s sew what Bigtree posted about his FOIA request on the website of ICAN, the antivaccine group he fronts that was largely funded by Bernard and Lisa Selz, as I discussed last year. So let’s hear Bigtree’s version of what happened:

In summer 2019, ICAN submitted a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to the CDC requesting “All studies relied upon by CDC to claim that the DTaP vaccine does not cause autism.”

ICAN also submitted this same request for HepB, Hib, PCV13 and IPV, as well as requesting the CDC provide studies to support the cumulative exposure to these vaccines during the first six months of life do not cause autism.

Despite months of demands, the CDC failed to produce a single specific study in response to these FOIA requests.

In his podcast and propaganda, Bigtree tried to make it sound as though the CDC was stonewalling. More than likely, as Reiss explained, the delay in responding to the FOIA request was not unusual for a federal agency, as this blog entry from the federal government explains:

One of the frustrations with the FOIA process that we hear about most frequently is the delay in an agency’s response to a request. Frequently, requesters contact us to ask why an agency has not responded within the 20 working days response time that is prescribed in the law. We understand that delays are extremely frustrating; unfortunately they are all too common at agencies that receive a large volume of requests and at agencies that are struggling to respond to a backlog of old requests.

Federal agencies have real work to do, and FOIA requests are usually not at the top of their priorities, and understandably so. One might argue that these requests should be higher, so that at least a response is received within the 20 working days, but many federal agencies are also understaffed. If Congress wants agencies to be able respond to FOIA requests faster, it needs to allocate more resources (i.e., funds) to the process. So if an agency is slow. For instance, the CDC received 1,422 FOIA requests last year and completed 1.293 of them. This is an unusually large number. If you look back several years, you’ll see that the CDC usually gets between 1,000-1,200 requests in a typical year, but in FY 2018 it received 1,399 and in FY 2019 it received 1,422. (One wonders how many of those were from antivaxxers.) In any event, it likely wasn’t because the CDC was stonewalling that it didn’t respond to Del Bigtree’s abusive FOIA for several months.

More interesting, what caught my interest right away was the strangely specific nature of the FOIA request:

  • “All studies relied upon by CDC to claim that the DTaP vaccine does not cause autism.”
  • The same request for HepB, Hib, PCV13 and IPV, “studies to support the cumulative exposure to these vaccines during the first six months of life do not cause autism.”

Of course, my first reaction was simple: Read it for yourself! It’s not as though the CDC website doesn’t cite numerous papers in its discussions of vaccine safety. My second reaction was: Dude, have you never heard of PubMed? My third reaction was: Clearly Bigtree doesn’t understand the scientific process. The conclusion that vaccines are not associated with an elevated risk of autism is not something that’s been demonstrated by just one study or even a group of studies. It’s a conclusion that’s been reached after decades of studies, coupled with an increasing knowledge of the genetic basis of autism which has been increasingly shown to be mostly genetic in nature.

Bigtree is, however, a skilled antivaxxine propagandist and promoter of disinformation. So he definitely knew what he was doing. He knew that a FOIA request to the CDC would likely take a long time, which he could then spin into as being indicative of a coverup. He then knew that, if he sued, whatever he ended up getting out of the CDC, he could spin it as not showing that vaccines don’t cause autism. Never mind that, as Reiss explains, the court ruling on the FOIA request has nothing to do with the question of whether vaccines cause autism. The court was merely ruling on the FOIA request, not on any scientific question of whether the studies provided by the CDC show that vaccines don’t cause autism, as Reiss pointed out:

The vast majority of this complaint is legally irrelevant to the ICAN FOIA lawsuit. The question the court needed to address in the ICAN FOIA lawsuit was not whether the vaccines cause autism. That’s not an FOIA question and not something the court will need to reach to address whether the plaintiffs are entitled to the materials.

And:

To win their FOIA lawsuit, the complaint had to show that there is a basis to think obtainable records exist, and the government is not handing them over. There is not much of that in the complaint.

There is no way, shape or form that the court addressing this ICAN FOIA lawsuit would rule on whether vaccines cause autism because that’s not what FOIA is about. Including that lengthy discussion suggests strongly that the complaint was not filed with a view to achieving a meaningful legal victory on the requests, but to use as talking points when the result – whatever it is – is presented to ICAN’s followers, and maybe others. In other words, this was not an honest lawsuit.

Del Bigtree’s antivaccine propaganda organization filed the lawsuit. Of course it wasn’t honest! Bigtree is a master of disinformation, and this lawsuit was clearly meant to provide him with more fodder to spread antivaccine misinformation. Reading between the lines, likely the CDC just wanted this obviously abusive lawsuit to go away; so likely it assigned someone to pick some studies to throw Bigtree’s way. Personally, I probably wouldn’t have stopped at just 20 studies (there are definitely more). On the other hand, no number of studies would have satisfied Bigtree, and no matter how many studies the CDC threw back in his face the result would have been the same. Bigtree would have declared “victory” and that the evidence was not enough for him. Again, he’s not an honest player in this. From my perspective, his history very clearly shows that.

Amusingly, as Dr. Ianelli shows, even antivaxxers were not convinced that this was a “win.””

So what did Bigtree get? Back to the ICAN blog post/press release:

In the stipulation, the CDC was only able to identify 20 studies:

-One relating to MMR (a vaccine ICAN did not challenge)

-Thirteen relating to thimerosal (an ingredient not in any of the vaccines ICAN queried)

-Five relating to both MMR and thimerosal

– One relating to antigen (not a vaccine) exposure.

On the CDC’s list of studies was a recent review by the Institute of Medicine (IOM), paid for by the CDC, which conducted a comprehensive review for studies relating to whether DTaP does or does not cause autism. The result was that the IOM could not identify a single study to support that DTaP does not cause autism. Instead, the only relevant study the IOM could identify found an association between DTaP and autism.

In other words, the CDC listed a review in response to the FOIA requests that proves that there are no studies to support that DTaP does not cause autism.

There are some inconsistencies here. For one thing, why did Bigtree ask for “cumulative exposures during the first six months”? As more than one person has asked, does he no longer believe that MMR causes autism? After all, MMR is usually not administered before 12 months of age, and it was the MMR that, according to Andrew Wakefield, resulted in “autistic enterocolitis.”

The second part about a study relating to “antigen (not a vaccine) exposure” is pure scientific ignorance. As Dr. Ianelli pointed out, “most folks will understand that those antigens come from vaccines!!!” I mean, come on! The title of the study was Increasing Exposure to Antibody-Stimulating Proteins and Polysaccharides in Vaccines Is Not Associated with Risk of Autism. The source of the antigen exposure is listed in the title, and the conclusions were quite clear:

We found no evidence indicating an association between exposure to antibody-stimulating proteins and polysaccharides contained in vaccines during the first 2 years of life and the risk of acquiring ASD, AD, or ASD with regression. We also detected no associations when exposures were evaluated as cumulative exposure from birth to 3 months, from birth to 7 months, or from birth to 2 years, or as maximum exposure on a single day during those 3 time periods. These results indicate that parental concerns that their children are receiving too many vaccines in the first 2 years of life or too many vaccines at a single doctor visit are not supported in terms of an increased risk of autism

Those who follow the antivaccine movement will know that this study was looking specifically at the antivaccine trope of “too many, too soon,” more specifically, the claim that the “large” number of vaccines somehow overload the immune system or expose the baby to too many “toxins,” resulting in autism. The study above is powerful evidence against that hypothesis, which is why I no longer call it a hypothesis but an antivaccine trope. As Dr. Ianelli points out, this isn’t even the only study coming to that conclusion. These studies covered the vaccines in the US schedule as well as some used in Asia. Also, as Reiss pointed out, some of the thimerosal studies looked at individual vaccines, such as this one, which looked at the DTP vaccine in increasing doses and found that increasing dose was negatively correlated with the risk of neurodevelopmental disorders. No, I’m not saying that DTP prevented such disorders in the study, only that the study does not show any signal at all that DTP might be associated with autism.

There’s also the issue of biological plausibility. Again, increasingly evidence indicates that autism is primarily genetic in nature. Combine that body of evidence with the large body of evidence that vaccination is not associated with an increased risk of autism, and there is no reason to suspect that vaccines cause autism. Scientists know that you have to look at the totality of evidence; antivaxxers want to cherry pick studies. Moreover, their requests are inherently not made in good faith. If you produce studies looking at exactly what they say they want the studies to look at and they’re negative, antivaxxers will move the goalposts. It’s what they do. As for the cherry picked quote from the IOM, if you actually read the IOM report form 2013, it concludes quite clearly that vaccines are very safe, are not associated with autism, and that serious adverse events are rare. Indeed, in the report brief, the IOM explicitly wrote:

Upon reviewing stakeholder concerns and scientific literature regarding the entire childhood immunization schedule, the IOM committee finds no evidence that the schedule is unsafe. The committee’s review did not reveal an evidence base suggesting that the U.S. childhood immunization schedule is linked to autoimmune diseases, asthma, hypersensitivity, seizures, child develop- mental disorders, learning or developmental dis- orders, or attention deficit or disruptive disorders.

That’s a pretty clear repudiation of antivaccine claims.

So what does this lawsuit mean? What it most definitely does not mean is that vaccines cause autism or that there isn’t copious evidence that vaccines are not associated with autism. Instead, what it very likely means is that the CDC, in order to get rid of a clearly vexatious lawsuit while in the middle of dealing with a pandemic, threw together a quick list of studies, doing the bare minimum possible to make the lawsuit go away so that the resources being wasted dealing with this lawsuit could be put back into dealing with a pandemic likely to cause the deaths of thousands of Americans. That Bigtree would pursue such a dishonest lawsuit under such conditions does not speak well of him.

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]

238 replies on “Del Bigtree wastes the CDC’s time during the COVID-19 pandemic with an abusive FOIA lawsuit”

We have the CADA over here. Commission d’accès aux documents administratifs. Notoriously lenient

There’s even a #WTFcada Twitter hashtag to track everything that’s repeatedly going wrong with this instance. Flawed by design…

I understand that the FOIA is being abused. But I’m still very much happy for your country that you have that mechanism to access data.

I agree that FOIA is generally a good thing, and I say that knowing that most requests overall are actually from business competitors, that it’s costly, and that it can be abused. It’s important to have such a mechanism. There should be no secret government.

It’s still fair to call our misuse of it. In addition to the points above, this was also a misuse because FOIA is not a mechanism to demand an agency to put together a report. It’s a mechanism to ask for existing records. This was a request asking the agency to compile a report, basically (where the cdc already has the information online, as Orac said), and that’s not something the law covers. It’s important to be able to demand account from government, but to allow government to function, such a demand needs to be done in a systematic way, not by allowing any citizen to force the government to stop all else and do the report that citizen feels like doing.

There are multiple mechanisms by which CDC has to give account actively, and formal ways to demand it. Not this way.

@ Dorit

I lack insight into the US situation, so it’s hard for me to judge. Yet, all your arguments are sensible.

But 8 months merely to acknowledge having received a request, I call that “prendre les gens pour des cons”. Playing the idiot, in english…

And there is this whole “excuse culture” of “Oh! These poor civil servants are overworked! You should be nicer to them…”. Hmmmh… no. It just shows that things are not going right. Whether or not they’re overworked or not is a genuine whataboutism.

But Gary Null asking for your emails between you and Orac just blows my mind… To me, this is so over the top.

Abusive FOIA requests for emails from critics who work for state universities have become a staple among preferred harassment techniques of science deniers. That’s why those of us who work for state universities are usually VERY careful about what we commit to email and tend to prefer phone calls and texts for sensitive matters.

A. Most agencies have a process that generates an automated email acknowledging a request but the actual request would be handled according to a place in the queue.

B. I don’t agree with your second point. As Orac pointed out, what usually happens is that agencies don’t get extra budget or people for FOIA requests, and they’re on top of their usual duty. So there really is a resource issue.

To put it bluntly, if congress really wants FOIA requests done fast, it should pay for it. I think cdc should prioritize preventing diseases, especially right now.

C. I have had at least six Public Records Act requests at this point, probably more, for things ranging from emails to teaching syllabi to travel expenses and meeting schedules. I’m fairly sure Orac had others too. It’s a routinely used tool of science deniers.

I don’t have any now, although I expect them now that Null has broken the ice, so to speak. I’m amused though. I bet he’s disappointed. There were some emails, but nothing the least bit embarrassing. They were all very mundane, nothing nefarious.

It reminds me on people in the Netherlands doing something simular with their local authorities, asking for lots and lots of information, just to get money because the requests can’t be handled in a certain time.

@ Renate

“Just to get money because the requests can’t be handled in a certain time.”

That certainly won’t happen where I live.

Do you have examples available of this kind of abusive behaviour in the Netherlands?

@ Orac:

I can anticipate their response:

:” See? Orac has something to hide because he hides important stuff in phone calls and texts! Maybe we could get an order to look into those”

These people will do anything to get attention/ prove sceptics wrong.
-btw- I am sorry that you and Prof Dorit have to deal with their meddling BS and lack of respect.
BUT it demonstrates your worth- you’re threats to pseudoscience

Different situation. I live in Detroit. Kwame was Mayor and under investigation by the Wayne County Prosecutor’s office and the feds. Besides, that’s why there’s Signal.

I think their standard for what is interesting is different than yours. They have shared some of my super boring emails on threads as if they thought there was something there.

Well, sure, which is why I’m surprised that Gary Null hasn’t trumpeted how you and I have—gasp!—actually exchanged a few emails and that I’ve—gasp!—exchanged emails with Peter Hotez and Paul Offit.

@ Orac:

I’m not sure how much of this applies to you and Prof Reiss but….’

the Null-macher is hiring a group of new lawyers intent on suing Wikipedia/ Wikimedia, Jimmy Wales. their board, lawyers, editors as well as sources whose material is used to “slander” ( heh) him by being even peripherally involved in that bio which smears him.

So, he’s going after our Whole Secret Sceptic Multinational DeepState Cabal
OOPs! I shouldn’t have said that!

I’m surprised that Gary Null hasn’t trumpeted how you and I have—gasp!—actually exchanged a few emails

Wait, Gary isn’t going to hunt me down? I must not be trying hard enough.

With Barr and both political parties jonesing for a law to end personal encryption there are no certainties.

This doesn’t appear on its face to affect use of PGP, which anybody concerned about encrypting their E-mail should be using in the first place.

PGP probably isn’t what you want to be using right now.

Good information, thanks. It’s not something that I’ve kept up on.

More directly, Barr and others have repeatedly been arguing for backdoors into encrypted devices — a horribly bad idea on its face, even without the realization that once it exists the clock is ticking for the process to leak out.

Yeah that’s horrendously stupid, just asking for trouble.

F68.10 (Would it be too familiar simply to address you as F?), another point to consider is that in the last three years, CDC has had its budget cut repeatedly and deeply by the Trump maladministration, undoubtedly making FOIA requests a lower priority than in the recent past.
This, and the preference of the president and his kakistocrats for wishing away inconvenient facts,are the major reasons why the US, instead of leading the world in the response to COVID-19, is flailing around, giving the appearance of acting decisively instead of actually acting decisively.
On a related but somewhat more off-topic note I am relieved to see that Dr. Missonier’s family connection is not being held against her (yet) by the White House.

@ Old Rockin’ Dave

Point taken. “Maladministration”, “kakistocrats”… Nice choice of words. I’ll keep them in mind.

I do understand the impulse that led to the Trump vote, though, and I do not believe the US is out of that quagmire yet. Somehow I feel that the historical US bipartism is partly responsible for paving the way for such a degradation of morals in politics. Hope you people solve it quick, for more than your own sake. (Must say I do enjoy the Kakocracy Show, as my own morals have been heavily twisted over time…)

Call me F if you want. I’m fine with that… (My nick was chosen one day I felt in such a worse-than-nightmarish mood that I may well consider changing it to F sometime. Thanks for the suggestion.)

I do understand the impulse that led to the Trump vote, though

What do you take that to be?

and I do not believe the US is out of that quagmire yet.

I suspect, depending on the foregoing question, that that might be quite an understatement.

@ Narad

“What do you take that to be?”

Can’t get in a long-winded dissertation on the topic here. But in 2 words: Andrew Breitbart. He epitomized much of what led to Trump.

“I suspect, depending on the foregoing question, that that might be quite an understatement.”

It very likely is an understatement. Which wouldn’t make it any less true.

He epitomized much of what led to Trump.

Yah. No. You might want to direct your attention to the DNC.

@F68.10

Kakistocracy is a real word, with a long history:

kakistocracy (n.)
“government by the worst element of a society,” 1829, coined (by Thomas Love Peacock) on analogy of its opposite, aristocracy, from Greek kakistos “worst,” superlative of kakos “bad” (which perhaps is related to PIE root *kakka- “to defecate”) + -cracy. Perhaps the closest word in ancient Greek was kakonomia “a bad system of laws and government,” hence kakonomos “with bad laws, ill-governed.”

@ Narad

“Yah. No. You might want to direct your attention to the DNC.”

That’s why one should never answer complicated questions when someone wants to poke cheap holes into your theory. OK. So why would the DNC epitomize, in 2016, more of what led to the Trump vote than did Andrew Breitbart?

@ Rich Scopie

Thanks. I was aware of that. That word seems seldom used in my part of the world, so I was surprised with it.

That’s why one should never answer complicated questions when someone wants to poke cheap holes into your theory. OK. So why would the DNC epitomize, in 2016, more of what led to the Trump vote than did Andrew Breitbart?

Breitbart-dot-com peaked at 23 million unique visitors in November 2016; obviously, not all of these were true believeroonies, and there’s no data I’m aware of regarding their turnout. If they all were, this would account for 36% of the popular vote (which, you may recall, Trump lost). I’ll grant that they had a large social-media presence,* but there is the further issue of social engagement by age† — older voters had very likely not been Borged assimilated by Bookface, much less Twatter.
By contrast, and leaving aside the scheduling of the debates,‡ there are several DNC issues: anointing Clinton in the first place, despite her unlikeability, and then allowing her to basically take control of the party.§

As a final note, although I voted in 2016, I skipped the presidential portion of the ballot.

* www[.]cjr[.]org/analysis/breitbart-media-trump-harvard-study.php

† i[.]insider[.]com/58250662691e881c008b6271

‡ And the superdelegates: en[.]wikipedia[.]org/wiki/List_of_Democratic_Party_superdelegates,_2016

§ www[.]politico[.]com/magazine/story/2017/11/02/clinton-brazile-hacks-2016-215774

^ Oh, crap, that came out totally mangled. I’ll try again; I though a Unicode nonbreaking thin space would allow me to get away with the asterisk-eating problem.

^^ Oh, hell, all I lost is the attempt to create a numbered list; these markers are the ones that were eaten. I’m just going to leave it for now.

@ Narad

I was summing up what I believed the psychological rationale of that vote was by highlighting someone who epitomized the impulse I was talking about.

You’re talking electoral data and electoral dynamics. A bit like Karl Rove.

It seems we’re talking a bit past each other here. But Clinton obviously was a bad choice given the image she had in sections of the population. Old-style party politics indeed seem to be coming to an end, or at a minimum to a downfall. The decapitation of the so-called socialist party in my country speaks volume to that claim: Jihadi John couldn’t have done a better job at it than Emmanuel Macron did.

Weird as it seems, seen from the US, Macron also benefited from the Internet for the same reasons Trump did. Though it ended up forming a dominant centre-right and pro-elitism faction shutting up the bipartisan loons on both the right and the left. Which may seem weird seen from the US, but the outsider circumventing institutional forms of communication between political parties and the rest of the population, that template fits the bill of both Trump and Macron.

What I’m concerned with is why the psychological impulse specific to the US brought Trump to power, whereas it brought Macron to power in this corner of the world…

@ Narad

Which all the weirder since he (Macron) also benefited from huge media support at a time where people frown on them very severely…

You guys are too old and neither of you seem to be on social media much; Facebook is full of old people, boomers and older; in fact, a lot of young people avoid it all together these days. The old people on there are mostly really stupid about it as far as just believing and sharing all kinds of ridiculous crap (which is really funny because when I was a kid on the internet they were always saying things like “you can’t believe what you read on the internet,” but that was also back when people were a little more sane about things like meeting people from the internet and jumping into cars with strangers). And if anything, Twitter is quite a bit more sane and reality-checked than Facebook; there are bubbles, but the constant bickering and retweeting leads to a type of reality checking that doesn’t happen on Facebook.

Quit acting like you know everything! Jeez! God!

Haha. Okay. My English abilities are getting a little better even with all the seizures lately, I was getting kind of pretty freaked out about that, although it’s definitely still much more of an effort than it ever used to be.

@ JP

What’s “old” for you? And no, indeed, I avoid social media like hell: I wouldn’t expect anything out of it on my end.

As far as acting like I know everything, point taken, though I’m under the impression that Narad would be keen on poking holes into whatever I may say that wouldn’t be factual or precise enough. So I’m trying to be a decent sparring partner. I hope he enjoys it.

@ F68.10

For a real abuse of US FOIA and of office have a look at Ken Cuccinelli.

/

While Virginia Attorney General, Ken Cuccinelli targeted Michael Mann, a former climate researcher and professor at the University of Virginia, with a request for a broad range of documents.

https://www.desmogblog.com/ken-cuccinelli

The rest of the DeSmogBlog entry makes interesting reading.

I believe that he is currently Acting Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security is the US Gov’t, continuing US President Trumps tradition of outstanding appointments.

Again, there is this one:
Hviid A, Hansen JV, Frisch M, et al. Measles, Mumps, Rubella Vaccination and Autism: A Nationwide Cohort Study. Ann Intern Med. 2019;170:513–520. [Epub ahead of print 5 March 2019]. doi: https://doi.org/10.7326/M18-2101
They did, regardless of the name, study other vaccines, too, see figure 3.
As usual, vaccines seem to reduce risk of autism, but to be fair, this time effect is only almost significant.

I bet there are no studies showing that vaccines don’t cause you to turn green and develop superhuman strength, either.

SRSLY.

I doubt that Null will create more FOIA requests now:
he’s too busy broadcasting seminars and classrooms on the air to instruct listeners about how to deal with COVID-19.**

“Dude. have you never heard of PubMed?” ( Orac)
Obviously not.
Just like other anti-vaxxers I read or scoffers who come here to rant and tell sad tales of “child destruction” who know nothing about studies involving early indicators of autism, genetics, prenatal origins etc. They assiduously avoid research that show that they are barking up the wrong tree with their elaborate Rube Goldberg contraptions that explain how vaccines lead to “brain damage” invoking physiology by – apparently- randomly inserting terminology that sounds impressive and vaguely related.

** only 20 USD! repeated from last week
That’s when he’s not trying to counteract his Wikipedia bio by reciting his accolade, accomplishments and occupations over the past 50 years as a researcher, teacher/ professor, medical innovator, scientist, scholar, activist, healer and all around influencer.

Yup, pure publicity stunt to keep Bigtree and now his bus driver relevant to their base. Bigtree egregiously misrepresents the court decision as Prof. Reiss points out and although he’s a true believer, he still lies and his sycophants believe him even though the facts counter his claims. They then try to spread Bigtree’s gospel and get butthurt when they miserably fail coming up against us meanie sceptics.

I’m wondering how much of this Dull Bigtwig/ICAN FOIA trolling originates with Dull’s good pal and partner in crime – RFK, Jr.
I know that Dull doesn’t have the intellect to dream up the specifics of these requests/complaints even if they are laughably idiotic to rational people.
I posit that it is RFK, Jr. who is leading Dull around by the nose:
Jr. – “You know, Dull, you and your ICAN could file a FOIA request for xyz and when the CDC doesn’t respond in a timely fashion you can bring suit. Once they do respond with information we have already been presented you can just refute their response with [talking point lie #1, talking point lie #2, etc]. Then you can declare legal and scientific victory. Here, I’ll help you write it up…”
Dull – “Gee, Mr. Kennedy, thanks for the ideas!”

1) I really appreciated the link to Dr Ianelli’s post, and the associated screenshot text messages by antivaxxers. I could not have laughed harder (nor could I have written such great satire) at that series of texts!! To paraphrase:
2) Q: I read the document and it doesn’t say that CDC lost so I’m confused.
A: Nobody won, both parties agreed to dismissing the suit.
Q: But Del said yesterday on his show that they WON!?
A: He says that a lot…and he makes MILLIONS OFF his show—but donate.
3) He is annoying, and it says a lot that he is considered by some to be the smartest guy in the antivaccine room…

No. No they are not “maiming children”. The CDC is doing the best it can to improve the health of all Americans, despite serious budget constraints and all kinds of weird Congressional limitations on what they can study. And then they’re expected to respond to a serious infectious disease after the team in charge of pandemics was fired?

Your completely baseless accusations are cruel and unhelpful.

The CDC is busting their collective butt to save your life. The least you can do is lay off the defamatory lies.

“The CDC is maiming children.”
No, that’s the chemtrails. Or the mind control signals from cell towers. Whichever, you can’t go wrong wearing your tinfoil hat.

Is the anti-vax parent ever going to pay, or is that million deducted from the resources available to un-named, un-famed ordinary people who get 11 minute PCP visits as a substituted for real medicine.

YOU BUFFOONS! Dorit didn’t even pass the bar and 100% of vaccines studied tested positive for glyphosate, the main ingredient in Roundup. It causes cancer and breaks the blood brain barrier allowing toxins to be more easily absorbed into the brain 🧠. Got cancer? Got neurological disorders? Here’s your cure. Gelatin a mixing agent found in vaccines is made from the hooves of animals. Animals eat the gmo corn sprayed with Roundup and it gets into their bones. There is no way to process out the Roundup from gelatin. Animals step on mice in barns. Mice carry tics and tics carry Lyme. A deadly mouse retrovirus was also found in vaccines studied. Retroviruses cause autoimmune disorders. Got Lyme? Got autoimmune disorders? Here’s your cure. AS YOU CAN SEE OUR ENTIRE MEDICAL SYSTEM IS RUN OFF OF THIS FACT I believe. Stephanie Seneff did an exponential growth curve and found 1 in 2 with autism by 2032! THATS NOT COUNTING THE EFFECTS OF 5G!! YOURE GOING TO RIP UP THE MICROWAVE POWER TO 15000x current power liken to living in an airport scanner with multiple foreign animal and human DNA and retroviruses, heavy metals, viruses, bacteria, STDs, formaldehyde, Polysorbate 80, Roundup and even AN ENTIRE MALE HUMAN GENOME ALL DNA MARKED FOR CANCER RUNNING THROUGH OUR BRAINS? Who THE FUCK IS RUNNING THIS SHITSHOW? This ain’t healthcare NO MATTER WHAT ANYONE SAYS. Don’t know what this is but it’s not healTHCare! Buffoons! You’re fired! YOU SHOULD ALL BE SUED FOR MANDATING A CONTAMINATED PRODUCT ON THE AMERICAN PEOPLE! CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY INCLUDES DEGRADATION OF HUMAN BEINGS, HUMAN EXPERIMENTATION AND MURDER. Ding. Ding. Ding. You lose!

A. I note you haven’t actually addressed the post.

B. This site actually addressed quite of your other bits of errors. I recommend using the search box (for example, search for “Seneff”.

C. How do you think taking or passing a bar exam is relevant to any of this?

Paragraphs, please. Also, the only thing that has anything interesting to say by speaking in block caps is a hole to hell in a Tanya Huff novel.

F. Total re-write.

@Jennifer Sheriden

I suspect “Ding ding ding” is the most sensible part of that entire tirade.

Seriously, get help.

Goodness me. That’s some lack of discrimination. Was there a single conspiracy theory missed? I imagine ancient aliens are involved somewhere.

@ NumberWang

Well, she didn’t even miss that one from gishgallop.com…

I would have thought that the URL would have it given it away, but… nope…

It is interesting how you go on and on with your musings thinking that somehow your position and your use of language will make you sound “right” or “smart”. You are part of the problem just as both sides attack one another. Public debate about the science will never happen because the truth gets hidden behind smooth talkers like you. The losers are our children who get “hurt” because of the prostrated acedemia bs that assumes people are stupid. Let me remind you that no level of education or training will keep the actual truth from the growing frustrated populace. A word of advice…people are not stupid and you are not the smart one. You are cunning though and manipulative. The only way you wouldn’t be is if you had a child that was injured by a vaccine and Im sure you would fall off your mountain. Do everyone a favor. Stop spreading hate and lies and start telling the truth. People are watching.

Autism is not encephalopathy.

Guess what also causes encephalopathy: measles, Hib, tetanus, etc. Do please tell us which vaccines cause more encephalopathy than those. Really what diseases do you want to come back so kids can suffer from high fevers, pneumonia, seizures, etc to avoid those “rare” cases of encephalopathy.

You don’t care about autism, it is just that vaccine are bad in your book, and you get a kick out of every kid that suffers from high fevers, pneumonia and even seizures from an actual disease. Like this poor kid: https://www.oregonlive.com/health/2019/03/unvaccinated-oregon-boy-6-nearly-dies-of-tetanus-racks-up-1-million-in-bills.html

Not to mention the fact that vaccine induced encephalopathy is a myth:
Doja A. Genetics and the myth of vaccine encephalopathy. Paediatr Child Health. 2008;13(7):597–599. doi:10.1093/pch/13.7.597
You seem to think that repeating a lie makes it a truth.

There is a lot of examination of the science and multiple oversight monitoring mechanisms – including monitoring systems and oversight committee. Reading the posts on this blog will teach you about some of those. I hope you read and learn.

This is an area where there is a lot fo information. But anti-vaccine activists want to cast doubt and mislead about it.

Mr Russell, have you seen that classic episode of the Simpsons’ “Monorail”?
Del Bigtree is the guy trying to sell you a monorail. Science is Marge reminding you that main street is a mess.

Debates are about selling, about charming, about swaying. Debates are not about the hard facts and reality.

Depends on your definition of ‘stupid’. Frankly most people are ignorant rather than stupid. Too ignorant to realise their lack of knowledge. The idea that the public en masse have the educational ‘chops’ to accurately critique any serious science us laughable.

Here’s how it works:

“I meditated so hard that I actually managed to float six inches above the ground for ten seconds”

“That’s amazing. Can I watch?”

“Sure. Here I go”

………………

“You’re not floating”

“Yes I am”

“Nope. I’ve got this piece of paper here. It won’t fit between your arse and the floor”.

“Tell the TRUTH. Who paid you to hide the TRUTH that I can levitate? You’re getting paid by Big Ladder aren’t you? I did levitate but you lifted the floor at the same time didn’t you? Anyway, just because you can’t fit a piece of paper through the gap between my bottom and the floor doesn’t mean anything.”

“????”

Like all big government and state agencies, they have a person/division whose only job is to respond to FOIA requests, e.g. the CDC’s FOIA Officer is Roger Andoh.

While FOIAs can be abusive and unreasonable, the citizen is charged for staff time and expenses.

The abuse is more often in the other direction, such as agencies charging citizens for xeroxing documents instead of sending them digitized versions.

I did a Colorado open records request a few weeks ago for the types of psychotherapies registered lay therapists declared (checklist) on their application to practice. The estimated cost for something that should have been digitized with the rest of the info on their applications – and <60 minutes of staff time – was $21,000.

As far as I know fees for non-profits and individuals are routinely waived when the request isn’t unusually large. In this case the settlement stated each party covers its cost.

I would also point out that this is not something a FOIA officer could do, exactly because they’re not asking for existing records but for answers to questions.

Agencies compliance with FOIA can certainly have issues, but there is every reason to see the abuse here as on the part of the antivaccine group.

Note that my comment re fees was for the federal FOIA. Each state’s public records act request law is somewhat different, and I suspect implementation is different too. I was not trying to justify what happened in your case.

The request was for “All studies relied upon by CDC to claim that the DTaP vaccine does not cause autism.”

All a FOIA officer would have to do to comply with this request is provide citations of studies that the CDC relied on — something that should be readily available in CDC files, if not on their website.

Under FOIA, an agency must waive or reduce fees in cases where “disclosure of the information is in the public interest because it is likely to contribute significantly to public understanding of the operations or activities of the government and is not primarily in the commercial interest of the requester.”

You don’t have to be a nonprofit to get fees waved, but you do have to make a case that the request is in the public interest. (By the way, I made such a case and got the $21,000 fee waved in Colorado.)

The CDC site said “vaccines don’t cause autism.” Not “DTaP doesn’t cause autism. It had sources for that up.

So no, it didn’t have to have a specific list of studies for DTaP, and the request was asking them to compile things.

I’m glad your fee was waived.

@ Murray A Russell

It isn’t about intelligence. I consider myself reasonably intelligent, though not even close to an Einstein. However, if someone were to give me several plans for building a bridge over a river, I could NOT in good faith choose one. Simply I have had NO training in structural dynamics and its not something one picks up by reading a few pages.

The people you attack come from many different nations with different histories, different cultures, different political systems, different economic systems, different educational systems; yet all of them have learned one or more of the sciences that underly vaccinations; e.g., immunology, microbiology, epidemiology, etc. And each of these nations mandate or strongly encourage vaccinations. Why would all these people from such diverse backgrounds who have devoted long years to education and then experience support something that would harm their nations own children? Keep in mind that almost all vaccinate their own children.

You mistake raw intelligence with knowledge and experience. If you consider yourself reasonably intelligent, I suggest you begin, for instance, with Lauren Sompayrac’s book: How the Immune System Works (6th edition), go to your local library and start reading Scientific American articles on infectious diseases, immunology, and microbiology. And stop making a fool of yourself by confusing raw intelligence with applied intelligence.

@ Jennifer Sheridan

First, passing the bar exam is required for practicing law in a state. PROFESSOR REISS, that is, a PROFESSOR of LAW at a major university, doesn’t represent clients in court; but has a large number of scholarly articles in prestigious law journals. Professors of Immunology or Microbiology can’t practice medicine; but that doesn’t diminish their level of knowledge on the subjects. Just another ad hominem, stupid attack. And Dorit Reiss is also a parent who loves her children, so, even in that case she has as much right to express her views as anyone. Finally, her specialty is vaccine laws and she has devoted many years to both laws about vaccines and, working with colleagues who are experts in vaccinology, epidemiology, etc. acquired a working knowledge of the subjects.

Now, let’s look at your claim about glyphosate in vaccines. Back in the late 1400s Paracelsus stated: “the dose makes the poison.” Given that glyphosate is ubiquitous in our environment, without vaccines we, all of us, get exposed to it, even if we don’t personally use it. The studies that found TRACE amounts of glyphosate in some vaccines were at best questionable. But, let’s accept their finding, which were in the parts per billion. Do you have any idea how little that is? If we were to test anyone’s blood, we would find trace amounts of just about anything in parts per billion.

I did a Google search using “Vaccines AND Glyphosates” and found pages of articles, almost every single one by antivaccine individuals or groups, just, in essence, regurgitating each other. All making claims like yours.

I did find several articles that explain clearly why glyphosate has not been shown to have any relationship to autism, including the questionable findings of it in vaccines and, if one accepts the findings, the incredibly small amounts.

And one of the main proponents is Stephanie Seneff, whose Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, not medicine, not immunology, not toxicology, not epidemiology. And in her writings she gives NO indication she has attempted to even master the basics of the aforementioned subjects.

I suggest you read the articles if you consider that you have an open mind, which I doubt you do:

Andrew Portefield ( (2019 Oct 11). Do vaccines contain glyphosate? Anti-GMO claim requires ‘very unlikely scenario’. Genetic Literacy Project. Available at:
https://geneticliteracyproject.org/2019/10/11/do-vaccines-contain-glyphosate-anti-gmo-claim-would-require-very-unlikely-scenario/

Vincent Iannelli (2019 Aug 11). Glyphosate in Vaccines. VAXOPEDIA. Available at:
https://geneticliteracyproject.org/2019/10/11/do-vaccines-contain-glyphosate-anti-gmo-claim-would-require-very-unlikely-scenario/

So, I think calling people BUFFOONS is a term that fits you much much better. Not only showing your lack of ability to enter into a civilized dialogue; but your resorting to name calling to compensate for your IGNORANCE,

Oh, and although it’s almost a moral certainty that she was a hit-and-run commenter, I’ll go ahead and point out that, no, gelatin is not made from hooves (inadequate collagen), nor is it a “mixing agent.”

Gelatin is made from boiling pig skin and a pigs connective tissue. Gross.

Sorry. As a French, I have to defend that “dans le cochon, tout est bon”.

On one hand, it’s making good use of waste products.
The Earth would be a much better place if we were doing a lot more of it.
OTOH, you really don’t want to go look at the origin and processing of much of what you eat or wear. “gross” is an understatement.

Speaking of pigs’ waste-products, pig’s manure is not very good as a fertilizer. A biology prof of mine once told us that a Nobel Prize awaits anyone who will find out how to get rid of this shit.

I don’t want it injected into my body.

Fine. It’s your opinion and I respect it.

It doesn’t belong there.

That is also your opinion. That one I don’t respect.
Your body is perfectly able to degrade proteins. Every cell in your body does it every microsecond of your life.

Oh, and re: Muslims and Jews:
In both cases, their religious credo emphasize the protection of life over following eating rules. IOW, they are fully justified – and encouraged – to protect their children with vaccines, at the cost of a little bit of unclean stuff.
There are even religious scholars to argue that gelatin from processed pig is not unclean anymore. And it’s not eaten.

Speaking of pigs’ waste-products, pig’s manure is not very good as a fertilizer. A biology prof of mine once told us that a Nobel Prize awaits anyone who will find out how to get rid of this shit.

Strange. Years ago, on an episode of “Beyond 2000”, there was a item about a pig farm. The farm toke the manure and processed it, creating both methane and growth medium for a bacteria that was then fed to the pigs.

@ Julian Frost

Ouh. It was years ago, I may have missed the developments in the last decades.
Or it didn’t reach my country yet…

Being a sceptic in a pandemic ?

— some possibly encouraging news from South Korea: the rate of new infections may be falling ( NBC, others) for the past few days. The Koreans initiated massive testing and public policies that work. They did not shut everything down.

— Trump gave a speech about the virus. Oy.

— Alt entrepreneurs will do anything to profit off of the crisis:
Mike Adams ( Natural News) has many scare mongering articles about the imminent death toll ( in his imagination)
Gary Null is selling online seminars ( 20 USD) about surviving the virus, strengthening immunity etc and “educating” listeners on air daily…

I wonder how anti-vaxxers will respond to PH/ CDC officials’ warnings/ instructions because most of them portray these professionals as criminals, liars and destructive influences. So will they follow guidelines or scoff at them?
.

some possibly encouraging news from South Korea: the rate of new infections may be falling ( NBC, others) for the past few days

N.b. new Seoul cluster.

Somehow I have more faith in SK to manage it than the US.
Fauci says we’re currently failing.

@ F68.10:

I’m not an expert in politics BUT
Trump attracted and marshalled a coalition of people who despised Mr Obama and his policies- some of them were business friendly tax cutters, Tea Partiers, libertarians, some evangelicals, others wished for a return to the more conservative society of the 1950s-1960s and others were more pro-actively opposed to immigration and civil rights. Although there have always been groups opposing civil rights, women’s issues and immigrants’ rights,never ( in my experience**) have they been so vocal, strident and transparent as they have been. recently.
I don’t know if you ever saw videos of the right wing rallies at Charlottesville but they are worth viewing.( Tiki Torches and ” Jews will not replace us”). Trump saw “good people” on both sides of the protests. Enough said.

** although I’m old enough to recall a bit of the civil rights era and have read about it obviously.

@ Denice Walter

“Although there have always been groups opposing civil rights, women’s issues and immigrants’ rights,never ( in my experience**) have they been so vocal, strident and transparent as they have been. recently.”

This has been the time bomb triggered by the Internet at the beginning of the Eternal September. We have not yet learned to live with it.

“Trump saw “good people” on both sides of the protests. Enough said.”

All too true. But I must say I saw bad people on both sides. Some clearly worse than others when it comes to morals, though.

But I must say your antifas in the US are serious loons. We have some here too, but the US freedom of speech allows them to spout weirder shit than they do here, or at least more publicly or openly. Down here, they tend to stick to violence and weird slogans as if they never understood WW2 was over. Their lunacy in the US is however more intellectually structured. I’m having a hard time evaluating their real level of dangerousness compared to what we have in our corner of the world. We also have different histories when it comes to racism, so it’s not that unexpected that they have grown accustomed to their circumstances in different ways.

@ JP

Feel free, JP. No problem with me. I can hear just about anything anyway.

I just have a problem with physically assaulting journalists, even though I do not like them much. This has gone too far IMO. For the rest, this tends not to be issues I’m concerned with. Other people are, and, unfortunately, that means things are not going to look better across the whole board in the near future.

That’s how our antifas and neonazis look like here, when they’re both busy trying to hijack protest movements:

If we had guns around here like in the US, we’d have Charlottesville rather routinely given the level of political hatred.

The twist is that the immigrant or formerly immigrant community doesn’t care about either sides, and we are witnessing the rise of political islam rather strongly. And these people are not natural allies with antifascists, who will end up pretty much isolated politically in a matter of years if the current trend keeps going on its tracks. Antiracism is a hard sell when it means covering up for theocrats…

The only thing that seems open to discussion in my mind is “which side will lose the game?” All we know is that it won’t be the center-right nor the muslim brotherhood who’ll lose… And the semi-far-left has moved towards authoritarianism, which will be a hard sell for the rest of the country’s population. All the rest is open to discussion.

Dunno if I’m in the moral majority (seems unlikely to me), but I simply see a situation that’s getting nastier, and I do not see antifa discourse making any useful contribution against the far right. Quite the contrary in my opinion: language has become incendiary and the far right has been doubling down on its position and is getting better and better at it. Crackdowns on immigration and the far left are coming IMO.

I’m getting so annoyed that I’m having wet dreams about SkyNet taking over the world.

@ Natalie White

So, you ignore everything else and focus on one thing. And if gelatin wasn’t involved you’d find something else. As for Jews and Moslems, both have laws and rules that overrule normal prohibitions if life, limb, or sight is involved. For instance, in Jewish law it is forbidden to work or travel on the Sabbath; but if someones life, limb, or sight is in danger one can go out to the field and pick herbs, grind them, etc. or drive them to the hospital. There is entire chapters of the Talmud devoted to this. See Wikipedia article: “Pikuach nefesh.” And the Quran and Hadith, bases of Islamic law include similar. Even the Catholic Church has ruled that the fetal tissue from the 1950s used for vaccines is acceptable until some other way can be developed for vaccines.

Islam: “1. Islam obligates man to secure the means to sustain his life. This includes obtaining food, drink, clothing, and shelter. It is forbidden for a Muslim to eschew these necessities to the point where it endangers his life. It also obligates the state to provide the minimum amount of these necessities to those who are incapable of providing for themselves. Furthermore, it obligates one who is in danger of losing his life to prevent death by consuming the property of others to the extent of his need.” “4. Islamic Law provides concessions under certain conditions to ward off undue difficulty that might cause personal harm or injury. One of these concessions is the right of the one who is sick or traveling to break his fast in Ramadan. Another is the right of the traveler to shorten his prayers.” see: The Objectives of Islamic Law Available at: http://www.ediscoverislam.com/islamic-law-and-legal-systems/the-objectives-of-islamic-law

I have more; but I think the above just shows your depth of ignorance. For the vast majority of Jews and Moslems, the science underlying the benefits of vaccines vs their rare serious adverse events says it all. And, of course, there is always the “exception proves the rule,” so one can find small enclaves who disagree; but there also exists a Flat Earth Society. You wouldn’t happen to belong to it???

So, as usual, you display your one-sided ideological rigid STUPID antivax position. Everything you’ve said in previous exchanges on the blog have been refuted with science, logic, and common sense; but you just keep popping up.

@ Athaic

No apology necessary, great minds think alike.

As for “dans le cochon, tout est bon.” Since I’m a vegan, I don’t quite agree that “everything with pigs is quite good.” 😀

Joel — In Jewish law, you are required to refrain from anything that causes self-harm. That has been interpreted to mean that if you need something (heart valve, vaccine, insulin) derived from a treyf animal, you can’t refuse it for yourself or others on the grounds it’s not kosher.

@ EmJay

I already know that; but gave only a few examples. So, fine, more the merrier. Have you actually studied Pekuach Nefesh.

Hah!
Del ( @ high wire talk. just now) is trying to scare people that having had a flu vaccine might make a person more vulnerable to corona viruses.
So while experts tell us that flu vaccines protect us in general, Del stirs up shit to scare us in any way he can.
Perhaps his partisans might be less likely to look at CDC or other SB information too.

Why do so many of the drive-bys here and elsewhere have such a problem with paragraphs? Not to mention what upper case is really for?

Please chaps, if you want us to look properly at your, errrrrrrr, “arguments”, can you first make them legible? Then we can see how intelligible they are…

That and other tells indicate that many of the drive by comments in a particular thread are by the same person. This has a few benefits. One is that they are busy wasting their time writing the commentz rather than harming people and small animals IRL. Two, there are fewer anti-vaxx lunatics than they’d like you to believe. Three, there is a shortage of paragraphs due to hoarding therefore their self control is a benefit to those who can put paragraphs to better use.

I have wondered about the amount of sock puppeting going on or if someone is trialling an anti-vax bot but hasn’t quite got the language and grammar bits worked out properly.

@ Doritmi

Kosher does refer to eating; but it also states in Torah that it is an abomination to touch the skin of a dead pig. So much for American football. However, Pekuach Nefesh would require, for instance, if caught in a snow storm and the only thing available was pig skins for blankets, keeping alive is more important. Even the most orthodox Jew would understand this.

Here is a theological statement on the vaccines issue.
http://www.vaccinesafety.edu/Porcine-vaccineapproval.htm

“31 July 2003

To whom it may concern

Re: Porcine and other animal derived ingredients in non oral medication.

It should be noted that according to Jewish laws, there is no problems with porcine or other animal derived ingredients in non oral products. This includes vaccines, injections, suppositories, creams and ointments.

Rabbi Abraham Adler, BPharm MRPharm S
Kashrus and Medicines Information Service”

Joel,

I haven’t studied Pekuach Nefesh. I haven’t studied Jewish law or philosophy at all, just picked things up here and there from my more devout and informed relatives.

In the pharmaceutical industry, gelatin is used primarily to make hard and soft gelatin capsules. Other uses include tablets, emulsions, suppositories and syrups. It has been used for over 125 years in the food industry. In other words, chances are some medications one has used during their lives contained gelatin, even gelatin made from pigs.

The worst thing about this here new virus is that it’s given me an earworm.

Presenting the “I-Feel-Like-I’m–Fixin’-To-Die-Of-Coronavirus Blues”. Feel free to sing along.

Look out all of you big strong men
Coronavirus is back again
We got ourselves in a terrible jam
’cause contagion spread from old Wuhan
So put on your masks, don’t shake hands
A pandemic’s stalking the land

And it’s 1, 2, 3, what are we coughing for
Don’t tell me, I feel real blue
Next stop’s the I.C.U.
And it’s 4, 5, 6, open up the pearly gates
Natural News would never lie
We all gonna die

I wonder if we could leave “Wuhan” out of it, calling this thing stuff like the “Wuhan” virus is only going to fuel nativism and racism that can lead to really, really ugly things, as history has shown us (if anybody around here has paid any attention to it with regard to Asians.)

It could have come from anywhere, viruses freaking happen. There’s a little thing called influenza that happens every year, don’t be freaking racist.

@Joel – Don’t bother with the rabbi and talmud stuff. It’s all BS to me. Stick to one side of the pig issue or the other. If your dogma says don’t eat it you certainly shouldn’t be injecting it directly into your flesh. Inconsistent like all the Abrahamic religions. Speaking of Abraham, what an asshole. Don’t even get me started on genital mutilation, mohels and herpes. Why is this still allowed? Sick!

https://www.timesofisrael.com/4-ny-babies-get-herpes-from-jewish-circumcision-rite-in-past-6-months/

@Natalie White

I see. You co-opt religion when it suits your point of view, and ignore it when it doesn’t.

What a hypocrite.

@ Rich

Ironic, isn’t it?
From Exalted Champion of All Fuzzy People to Contemptuous Judge of Those Wacky Beliefs in two comments.
She hasn’t told yet the Pope that he is not a good Catholic, but any minute now…

@ Athaic

“She hasn’t told yet the Pope that he is not a good Catholic, but any minute now…”

Well, let me do that for her: I doubt the Pope really believes in this whole stuff. The Catholic church is way too hierarchical: being a true believer is very likely not the main criterion that allows you to rise to the top.

@ F68.10

Nope.
By definition, whatever the Pope does is Catholic, as he is the duly (and holy) elected leader of the Catholic church hierarchy..

You can argue, and I could certainly agree, that a given pope is not following exactly the Xian scriptures and traditions or whatever. To quote approximately an American writer, David Eddings, Catholics like to think that God is talking directly to the Pope, but some Popes have proven quite hard of hearing.
You can even point at a time where there was two duly elected popes, each of them claiming to be the real stuff.

But in the essence of the definition of what a Pope is, he is Catholic. You can argue otherwise and create your own church, like plenty of folks did.
But then you are not Catholic anymore.
At best, you are an heretic. Alive or dead, depending on your running speed. At worst, you are an American televangelist.

@ Athaic

Well, I’m worse than a heretic: one of worst hard-headed kind of atheists. More “dogmatic” on the issue than Christopher Hitchens, though a bit more tolerant of true believers than him: I believe idiocy or severe delusion is an excuse for faith, but intelligence a legitimate reason to be confronted “to the end” on matters of faith.

Still, the pope and his actions are catholic by dogma, I agree on that point (though I do know my fair share of sedevacantists). I simply believe that he is bullshitting a fair share of catholics claiming he believes what he believes. He’s a jesuit after all… I know these kind of beasts from head to toe: been educated by them.

There are people who are simply anti-(fill in the blank). Being a habitual contrarian may fulfill a deep psychological need. They deal with their self doubts by projecting them onto everyone and everything.

@ Natalie White

First, the point I and others made was that Judaism and Islam allow for ruleS to be ignored if life, limb, or sight is involved. So, I and others were simply pointing out that you were wrong about claiming that if vaccines contained something not considered Kosher or Hallal that this would prohibit their use by Jews and Moslems. So, your statement: “Stick to one side of the pig issue or the other. If your dogma says don’t eat it you certainly shouldn’t be injecting it directly into your flesh. Inconsistent like all the Abrahamic religions,” shows you incapable of simple logic. It was you who brought it up, so the “pig issue” is relevant to the discussion. And it isn’t inconsistent, for instance, to have a day of rest to spend with family and contemplating life; yet, allow to act to save someone’s life, limb, or sight. As I also brought up, one isn’t supposed to even touch the skin of a dead pig; yet, if caught in a snow storm and the only blanket available was a pig skin, one is actually commanded to use it.

As for circumcision and mohels, numerous studies have found that circumcision reduces transfer of certain diseases, including HIV and is more hygienic. In fact, the risk of a woman getting a urinary tract infection is much much lower with a circumcised male. Keeping the glans penis clean, both in primitive times and for boys today is much easier. And there exists a problem called phimosis, an abnormal constriction of the foreskin that prevents it from being drawn back to uncover the glans penis, which requires surgery, much more painful when done later in life. I’ve followed the debate on circumcision for many years. Yep, one can find cases where it caused problems; but one can find such cases on anything. Quite typical of you and other antivaxxers to find the problem cases and ignore the benefits. You probably don’t even understand the difference between male circumcision and female circumcision. Whereas there is NO evidence that male circumcision reduces sexual enjoyment, female circumcision, at least the extreme forms, is intentionally carried out to end sexual enjoyment and doesn’t even exist in Judaism and though some Moslems do it, it has nothing to do with the Quran or Hadith; but based on primitive tribal rituals.

I assume you include Christianity in the Abrahamic religions? Or are you an antisemite? Wouldn’t surprise me.

And calling Abraham an asshole without any reasons is just plain stupid. Personally, I can find lots of faults with Abraham, after all, he was a human being.

So, your comment shows you incapable of even understanding when someone is responding to points you brought up, ignoring that it is a positive when religions have rules that can be broken to save life, limb, and sight, and, as usual, show your ignorance about the health benefits of male circumcision, stupidly attack Abraham without giving any reasons, etc. Would you have more respect for a religion that prohibits working or driving on a Sabbath if it followed the letter of the law and allowed someone to die, etc.?

YOU ARE STUPID AND FULL OF SHIT.

Your last sentence: exactly.

She finally seemed to get upset when I called her a sadistic child hater who loves to see kids suffer from high fevers, seizures, pneumonia, etc. Apparently she is not aware that is what her campaign against public health causes. It is idiotic to worry about gelatin instead of diseases like pertussis, diphtheria, tetanus, measles, etc.

Whereas there is NO evidence that male circumcision reduces sexual enjoyment

Oh, G-d, please don’t let her start in with intactivist ravings (although transmission of herpes through metzitzah b’peh is a genuine issue).

@ Joel Harrison

“As for circumcision and mohels, numerous studies have found that circumcision reduces transfer of certain diseases, including HIV and is more hygienic.”

I find this argument, for instance, to be of poor quality when discussing male circumcision, either for or against it.

It’s a question of balance between religious freedom, bodily integrity and individual autonomy. All other arguments seem to me to be rationalisations that do not address the real points.

I must say I’d appreciate banning the practice, but not at the price of needlessly angering whole religious communities. If such a ban or deprecation of that practice were to come, it should first and foremost come from within the religious communities themselves. (Which arguably means never).

HIV, hygiene or sexual pleasure modifications all seem to me to be rationalisations in the case of male circumcision. And maybe it would be more productive to have a closer look at the question of surgeries on intersex newborns first before going bonkers on the question of male circumcision…

HIV, hygiene or sexual pleasure modifications all seem to me to be rationalisations in the case of male circumcision.

I’m not sure when routine infant circumcision really took hold in the U.S., but my friends from the other side of the pond do think it’s odd. W—dia has a surprisingly comprehensive survey, including a link to this paper, which pretty much points to the obvious — looking like poppa is a big part of it.

@Narad, as I understand it, it happened post WWII. Because there was conscription, and because at the time military recruits were circumcised, a lot of men were circumcised. It’s quite a painful, uncomfortable operation, or so I’ve read. As a result, many men who returned from the War and had sons had them circumcised as it’s less traumatic to babies. That’s the explanation I’ve seen.

@ Narad

“My friends from the other side of the pond do think it’s odd”

I do think it’s odd. From the other side of the pond, people indeed do wonder why that happened in the US. I confirm.

And it’s not only antisemites that want to destroy jews and/or their traditions that are uncomfortable with it. I watched Europa Europa when I was a bit too young for that movie, and I still feel very uneasy when reminded of how being circumcised can get you into so much trouble. This is not the best of arguments against circumcision, nor even an argument per se, but I can’t say that this movie made me friends with the idea…

I am married to a naturalized citizen. His family is from Western Canada, and they all think it is weird. My mother-in-law said it never came up when she gave birth to dear hubby. When my doctor brought it up (apparently a standard question in the USA) I simply told him “no” because the dad was not born in this country. End of discussion.

@ Chris

And if a child developed a serious case of pertussis, diphtheria, tetanus, measles, etc. she would insist that Jews and Moslems be “consistent” and not seek medical help. Yep, she is a sadistic child hater who projects her evil self onto others instead of owning up to it.

@ Narad

Transmission of herpes is overall a genuine issue. Approximately 25% or more of adults in U.S. have genital herpes, herpes 2, and probably 80% have herpes 1, e.g., mouth sores, etc. And any medical procedure not carefully done can pass it on and even if one has an open sore, handshaking, etc. Herpes is ubiquitous in the environment. So, yep, a mohel who is careless can pass it on. And ones kid kissing someone and on and on it goes. The point is that White and antivaccinationists will always come up with some example to make their point, ignoring anything else.

@Joel rationalizes, “Herpes is ubiquitous in the environment”. As a public health professional surely you understand infection control. Last time I checked surgeons were not using their mouth to suction a wound regardless of their herpes status.

If I were a guy and found out my parents permitted a creep to cut my penis, peel the skin back, suck the blood with his nasty, diseased mouth, and I contracted herpes from it, I’D BE PISSED and feel betrayed. Anyone else do this besides a mohel, they’d be locked away. This tradition/practice/ritual is disgusting and needs to be abolished. No matter how it is packaged, it is genital mutilation.

@ Natalie White

“If I were a guy and found out my parents permitted a creep to cut my penis, peel the skin back, suck the blood with his nasty, diseased mouth, and I contracted herpes from it, I’D BE PISSED and feel betrayed.”

You’re overblowing things, but, yes, I’d also be pissed and feel betrayed.

However, basic point is this: you’re not them. It’s the word of people who went through this that needs to be heard. The job of people who didn’t went through this is to make sure that their voice is indeed heard and not covered up neither by voices of antisemites nor by voices of religious demagogues who want to keep people into the fold against their will.

If you’re genuinely concerned by issues of personal freedom in parts of the jewish community, you may start consider having a look at Footsteps. It would be a bit more constructive than mere rants.

@ F68.10 & Narad – So because I’m a woman, I can only speak about “female” subjects? Or I can only be outraged by things that happen to me personally? Give me a break! You two…thanks so much for the much needed laugh.

Oh, regarding the Trump campaign, Cambridge Analytica, a Steve Bannon company, played a big part in swaying the undecided in the 2016 election. They strategically concentrated their efforts through social media. Bookface, as Narad calls them, played a big part. I love “Bookface” btw. That makes me laugh, too.

The Great Hack on Netflix is a documentary about it and data mining through social media. Interesting and unsettling to say the least.

Good day to you both whether you like it or not.

So because I’m a woman, I can only speak about “female” subjects?

No, but you can’t claim insight into how to “feel” about having or not having a foreskin. It’s just like MDC all over again.

@ Natalie White

“So because I’m a woman, I can only speak about “female” subjects? Or I can only be outraged by things that happen to me personally? Give me a break! You two…thanks so much for the much needed laugh.”

No. You can perfectly voice your opinion. I did too: I claimed I did not like the practice of circumcision.

That’s when I started putting forward an argument: that the first who are concerned by this issue should have their own argument taken the most seriously. Doesn’t mean saying “Yes, you poor victim, only you know what it’s like, therefore only you may be right!” nor “Go on, your religion vindicates anything!”. Not at all. I despise both attitudes. BUT, it means that their arguments should be evaluated extremely seriously, whether we like them or not. That goes for jews, trans, whatever, even racists (where we have to consider their arguments seriously and rebut them seriously – IMO at least, some people do not agree with me here…). And when it is their welfare that is at stake, we should not pretend that it is ours that is at stake.

If they are perfectly happy with that weird kind of mild self-mutilation 30 years after, then so be it. We have no right to claim that they are not, unless we can objectify social pressures that forbid them from voicing their opinion, in which case we have a moral duty to look behind the curtain. Which is the point I raised implicitly by showcasing the Footsteps video.

“Good day to you both whether you like it or not.”

I do not mind you being polite and even well-meaning towards me. I simply discard any such statements, whether it comes from friends or foes: I’m antisocial.

As for your womanly victimisation, mind you, I have never denied that women have brains: It’s their main sexual organ…

Thanks for the song, dude.

I just recently deleted my Bookface profile for a bunch of reasons once I thought about it, some just very plausible unfortunate circumstance (world traveler, some dangerous places for people like me, a proclivity to make friends easily and want to keep in touch.)

Started a new more anonymous one (haven’t quite settled on a legal name anyway yet) mainly to keep up with some friends who are hard to keep up with or get it touch with otherwise (people who I either know well from real life and trust or know extensively from online and trust.)

@ Natalie White

First, you completely ignored the research on the positive benefits of circumcision. Typical. Second, I have been circumcised and don’t feel betrayed. As far as I can remember, haven’t even thought about it until I took a graduate course in Human Sexuality, learned about female circumcision, etc. and the positives of male circumcision and then was glad I had been circumcised. So, if you were a guy, OK, speaking for yourself, though a hypothetical. Third, while historically and among ultra Orthodox Jews circumcision is still carried out by a mohel, the vast majority in Western Democracies are carried out by physicians. And Fourth, “diseased mouth.” Some maybe; but given your sick personality, I guess no one has ever kissed you with their “diseased mouth.” You do understand that one can get herpes from kissing??? And unknowingly from touching ones genitals after being exposed other ways.

You just continue to show what a sick individual you are, focusing always on the negative. Well, in the real world, including vaccines, one has to weigh the benefits against the risks. Both vaccines and circumcision win by a significant margin. Only in lala fantasy paranoid delusion worlds like yours does one see the world in black and white.

ADDENDUM

Infection Control. Yep, to avoid herpes, let’s test every human being. If positive, mother’s and father’s not allowed to kiss babies or children. Keep kids apart, how? People must warn others that they tested positive or, perhaps, just an internet list. That way, it will be informed choice who we choose to kiss or not or even shake hands with. Yep, infection control for a, for most people, a minor irritant.

Oh that’s very excellent. It’s good to be reminded that people can and do come around to sense. (Now if only she’d make a statement about the other thing’s she’s said, I could use that lipstick again.)

@ Joel snivels, “If positive, mother’s and father’s not allowed to kiss babies or children”

I’ll fix that for you, “If positive, mothers and fathers (or anyone) should not kiss babies or children….ON THE MOUTH! No one should kiss babies and children on the mouth regardless of their herpes status. A man sucking the blood off a newborn boys cut, bleeding penis, is disgusting no matter how you tip-toe around it or try to divert with YOUR extremes. You are a public health professional, right?

Genital mutilation to boys done in a clinical setting, aka hospital, is safer, cleaner, and less cruel although still unnecessary. Boys can be taught how to clean themselves. Obviously, I’m opposed to all methods of mutilation. If you are following this practice due to religious dogma and you believe in God, why would God make such a flawed organ? You ever contemplate why the foreskin is (was) even there?

Keep living as a “vegetarian” while injecting pig, cow, chicken, dog, monkey and insects bits into your skin. It makes sense in your world but not mine.

Your whining about this subject is pathetic when you actually endanger many more children by encouraging others to make them vulnerable to measles, mumps, pertussis, diphtheria, tetanus, Hib, hepatitis, etc. Seriously, you are now an antisemitic sadistic child hater who loves to see kids suffer from high fevers, seizures, pneumonia, meningitis, encephalitis, etc. just because you are afraid of gelatin.

Do you panic when someone comes near you with a bowl of lime flavored Jello?

@ Chris

Jello. Good one. I forgot about it. My grandmother used to make lime jello with apple sauce in it and strawberry jello with canned peaches in it. And if she were alive today and offered it to me, though a vegan, my love for my grandmother would allow me to eat it without any qualms. As I’ve said over and over, I live in the real world, not a world of absolute opposites, black and white.

I get the impression that Natalie White is a really unhappy person???

I admit I was a bit freaked out when my in-laws served me a jello salad with actual vegetables. In our family it was always with fruit and considered a dessert, not the salad course.

You might be able to recreate that dish using agar.

I admit I was a bit freaked out when my in-laws served me a jello salad with actual vegetables.

Oh, yah, my great aunt had orange Jell-O with shredded carrots in it as a staple, served with mayo on a lettuce leaf. I think that she might have branched out for lime with pears one time, but it was a while ago.

She had good taste in serving vessels, though — if I ever get a place of my own again, I hope to rescue them from the storage unit that holds most of my irreplaceable possessions.

I admit I was a bit freaked out when my in-laws served me a jello salad with actual vegetables.

Not as freaked out as I was the first time I met jello salad – complete with grated carrot, pineapple pieces and small marshmallows in it. I had spent the first 2 and a half decades of my life in a culture where jello salad was not a thing.

Do you panic when someone comes near you with a bowl of lime flavored Jello?

I get the feeling that Natalie is just wanting to find something to be outraged about with respect to vaccines.

“I had spent the first 2 and a half decades of my life in a culture where jello salad was not a thing.”

I only managed 19 years. At first I thought it was because they were Canadian, then I found out it was a holdover from the 1950s. And a realization that my dad was a very good cook and would never allow such a travesty (I learned from him that spinach should never be cooked with anymore water than what clings to it after washing). It took several years to convince them that a tub of fluffy white stuff is not whipped cream (to me it tasted/felt like slightly airy sweet cheese). They finally got the hint when I would actually bring a small carton of heavy cream and insist on whipping up the cream myself.

Come on your guys, “Ambrosia salad” is good, don’t pretend. I like it anyway, it was a staple at the North Dakota Norwegian family reunions. (There was lots of other stuff too, but yeah, I mean, the food was pretty Norway-by-way-of-North-Dakota. I think there’s even still an old Lutheran Church cookbook somewhere around here at my mom’s house.)

Yah, my great-aunt who made the various Jell-O concoctions was from the Norwegian side of the family (her father was a rather prominent Lutheran, as I recall; in any event, my mother harbored a remarkable dislike for the Missouri Synod).

Oh yah, the Missouri Synod is horribly tyrannical and conservative and bigoted, just the worst. The worst one in the States, I would say. There are perfectly nice ones out there, progressive and enlightened even about LGBTQ stuff, with women pastors and everything.

@ Natalie White.

Obviously you are brain dead. First, not necessary to kiss baby on mouth, herpes can attach to many different cells in body. Changing diapers can potentially transfer if parent touched mouth or other body parts by accident. In fact, herpes can infect fingers. As for what you personally find disgusting is just you personally. I can think of lots of customs around the world I find repugnant. As for mutilation, again, your opinion. As for purpose of prepuce, I’m sure you are totally ignorant that our bodies include several remnants from evolution that today serve NO purpose.

And historians of various religious practices, e.g., avoiding pork, circumcision have found common sense reasons. For instance, pork often has trichinosis, beef doesn’t. So, someone or several noticed over time that eating pork often led to disease whereas beef didn’t. And in earlier times, someone noticed that the glans penis often became infected, etc. One can look at religion as a projection of both positive and negative human experiences and decisions, then justifying them with an anthropomorphic G-d. By the way, did a dentist remove your wisdom teeth? In many cases, a necessary procedure because otherwise would cramp development of other teeth. I only had bottom two. Friends had all four. So, again, evolution retained in me two useless potentially harmful teeth and in friends four.

In any case, leaving G-d out of it, evolution finds unessential remnants.

When living in Sweden, I actually helped arrange a circumcision. A couple I knew had a baby boy who they wanted circumcised. No mohels. I was friends which a Jewish neurologist and arranged he perform the circumcision. I held the infant while he did the circumcision. The infant cried for less than a minute, more from probably surprise as pain receptors not really developed. The tiny bit of skin removed didn’t repulse me, the tiny bit of blood barely noticeable.

As for being, actually vegan, not vegetarian, I do it for health reasons; but also because of cruelty to animals. However, as a scientist, not a brain-dead idiot like you, first, the minuscules amounts from animals used in some vaccines has NO influence on the cruel killing of animals. They would be killed in any case. And, as opposed to rigid idiots like you, if, for instance, I was stranded with a child in an isolated place and found cans of food containing animal products, I would first feed the child and if any left over, myself. As I pointed out, which you in your immense stupidity ignored, Judaism values life, limb, and sight first. And Kosher meat then and today requires raised free ranging, not torturing animals in tiny cells entire life and force feeding them, and one swift cut to jugular which, at the time, was as close to painless as possible. In fact, if a nick is found on knife, forbidden to eat, have to bury. So, even compared to today, Kosher was far less cruel.

So, since, given your absolute ignorance of the sciences underlying vaccines, rejecting the positives of circumcision, you just continue to make a fool of yourself.

By the way, since from an early age boys around me, not just Jewish were circumcised, I didn’t even think about it. I joined at age 8 the Young Men’s Christian Association, where I learned to swim. Since it was only male and pool was in basement, we got free towels and swam naked. There are some Jews who are angered by what happened; but only when they learned about it later from some misguided websites; but I can find groups of people who are angry over many things that have happened in their lives. often reasoning wrong, because listened to some idiot like you,.

Basically you are a malignant narcissist who considers yourself the litmus test for anything and everything. If you don’t like it, then its wrong. SICK, SICK, SICK

And, which you ignore, finding an article that four infants infected by mohel with herpes, thus assuming that the literally millions of Jewish men who have been circumcised became infected with something is just pure stupid. I do regret it happened; but, as I’ve explained and you ignore, herpes is a ubiquitous risk. In fact, I personally have several friends who have suffered from mouth sores from herpes from a very early age, probably touched something. Christians, not Jewish, and no mohel involved.

Why don’t you post on Age of Autism. I’m sure the gaggle of moron echo chamber will applaud any and all idiocies you submit in comments.

Come on your guys, “Ambrosia salad” is good, don’t pretend.

I’ve been meaning to get this off my plate, as it were, for a while now:

“Some writers described nectar as a drink made of honey and fruit, and ambrosia as a kind of porridge made from honey, fruit, olive oil, cheese, barley, and water.”

I’m inordinately fond of barley.

I like barley, especially in liquid form.

That second recipe reminds me a bit of a Christmas “pudding” type thing that was traditionally given out to Christmas carolers (I believe a little money was common also.) That one I think has wheat kernels, though, plus fruit and honey and maybe sesame seeds, nuts, whatever. Negatory I’m definitely the olive oil (makes sense, where would you get it), and I don’t think I’ve heard it cheese in it, either. Come to think of it, depending on when during the Christmas season it was, there might have still been a fast on, which basically means being vegan (not actually not eating, except on I think “Good Friday.”) The longer fasts do have fats when certain things are allowed though, like wine (any adult beverage), fish, butter, etc.

@ Joel writes, “As for being, actually vegan, not vegetarian, I do it for health reasons; but also because of cruelty to animals” You’re a vegan and you don’t want animals to suffer.

https://vaxopedia.org/2016/09/28/fetal-bovine-serum-in-vaccines/

Cruelty for the greater good. The calves are alive while their hearts are pierced and the blood is drained. https://3rs.ccac.ca/en/testing-and-production/tp-production/fetal-bovine-serum.html Many more examples of animal cruelty can be found associated with the bio-medical industry.

Joel, the walking contradiction, master of rationalization and compartmentalization. You would have made an excellent attorney.

@ Natalie White

Stupid Stupid Stupid, as usual. Don’t you even understand English. The article clearly states that when they slaughter a cow that is pregnant they then remove the fetus, not a calve. Do you know the difference between a fetus and a calve? The second article refers to possible fetal pain; but the science on this is contradictory at best. However, while I hope they can come up with a substitute, as I’ve written multiple times if the choice is between saving the life of a child, a human child, and there is currently no other means, then I accept the use of a dead cow’s fetus with regret. Again, do you in your infinite stupidity know the difference between a calf and a fetus?

By the way, you are sickened at a mohel sucking away the blood following a circumcision. As I already mentioned, I actually held the baby and the amount of blood was almost not noticeable. And you mentioned filty mouth, so I guess you have never been kissed. All mouths contain numerous microbes, i.e., filthy. However, when I was a scout back in the 1950s we were taught if someone was bitten by a rattlesnake to make a small incision at the bite marks and suck out the venom. So, we would have been sucking blood. Nowadays, they recommend a tourniquet and get the person swiftly to medical care. Simple question, if this were the 1950s and someone was bitten by a rattlesnake would you do what was considered necessary to save their life at the time and suck out the blood and venom?

And as for your disgust, Masai warrior make small incisions in neck vein of cows and drink the blood. In UK and Ireland, blood pudding is popular, basically made from pig’s blood. The French eat snails with garlic sauce. People eat chocolate covered ants. And in Australia, Aborigines eat beetles. So, your squeamishness is just your own and you shouldn’t judge others so easily; but that is exactly what you do, consider yourself the moral center of the universe.

You write: “Joel, the walking contradiction, master of rationalization and compartmentalization. You would have made an excellent attorney.”

It isn’t a contradiction, moron, to have basic standards, beliefs; but be willing to ignore them in special circumstances, e.g., like using a pig’s blanket when caught in a snow storm, gelatin in a vaccine to prevent illness, disability, and death. Only people like you who see the world in black and white would NEVER deviate, even if to save the life of, say, a child.

As for attorney, no, you stupid bitch, I would NEVER be an attorney. I actually took three undergraduate courses in constitutional law, and have read quite a lot. The fact that attorneys, knowing just how evil their clients may be, e.g., a corporation that to save money dumped toxins into water that causes illness and death, or attorney working as prosecutors, elected to office, who do everything to convict someone and even when overwhelming evidence shows wrongly convicted, fight against exoneration, nope, not for me. Though I have known and read of attorneys who take cases, not to get elected, not to earn money; but to fight for something worthwhile. But I prefer science. I base my position on science.

And, once again, though you will NEVER understand it, I personally and the Jewish religion and many other religions or personal philosophies will ignore some basic belief if it means saving a life, limb, or sight. This isn’t a contradiction, a rationalization, or a compartmentalization, it is being human and caring about ones fellow man. Stick to your absolutism and go to hell.

And I’m certain that if gelatin wasn’t in vaccines, you would find something else. And if vaccines were made from only genetically modified yeast to yield just a part of the antigenic determinant, what the immune system reacts to, you would still be against vaccines. Actually, they do make some vaccines this way, called vaccine-like particles.

JELLO INGREDIENTS: Strawberry Jello (Sugar, Gelatin, Adipic Acid (For Tartness), Contains Less Than 2% Of Artificial Flavor, Disodium Phosphate And Sodium Citrate (Control Acidity), Fumaric Acid (For Tartness), Red 40.)

The gelatin is the most nutritious thing in jello…the rest? Non-food.

I ate JELLO as a child before I started reading labels. American “cuisine” leaves a lot to be desired.

Agar agar is from seaweed and is used in Asian cooking for desserts. https://hot-thai-kitchen.com/mango-coconut-jelly/

One year we made homemade petri dishes for a science fair project with the agar and grew some interesting stuff.

Sugar is food.

In both (mainstream) Judaism and Islam, the gelatin in vaccines is not forbidden because it has been processed so much that it is “transformed”. Also, the benefits of vaccines outweigh the prohibition on pork products. (As determined by religious leaders.)

I’m getting the impression you don’t cook much, or you would know that gelatin can also come from chicken bones, and that’s what makes home made chicken stock so much better than the stuff out of a package.

That is one of the reasons I am mocking her. During this time in days of hayfever and coronavirus I have been taking cubes of my homemade turkey stock with a wee bit of salt as a nice hot beverage. When I make stock I cook it way down, put it into a shallow container to cool. Then I slice though the gelled stock with a butter knife, put it into the freezer, and when it is frozen pop out the cubes to be put into a plastic bag.

When I make vegetarian stock I then have to use ice cube trays, which is kind of annoying because any opening the freezer drawer can make it spill.

@ Chris

Homemade turkey stock. Probably as good a Jewish chicken soup, that is, Jewish penicillin.😀

My grandmother made it from scratch.

Nowadays, I like miso; but, as I wrote previously, if my grandmother was alive today, she’d be 118, and made chicken soup, actually matzah ball soup in chicken broth, I’d eat it and enjoy it because it would have been made with love.

Yep, Natalie, I’m a vegan; but love for my grandmother would come first. To you, a contradiction and rationalization, given I doubt you are capable of love.

For drinking broth I prefer turkey, mostly because I loved the turkey soup made by my mother-in-law (who is now 89 and in a retirement community, so she no longer takes our holiday turkey to make soup, so I made my own). We are worried about her, but so far we have not heard any reports about her independent living community.

I do make chicken stock, and make a very good chicken soup with flat dumplings (they are like thick fresh eggless noodles). Since I live in the proximity of several synagogues that range from orthodox to reformed (the latter used to have a really cool “Klezfest”… my youngest was a friend of the saxophone player in the Klezmer band) our local grocery store has a kosher section and lots of matzah products. I could probably make some flat dumplings with some ground matzah. Though for you, I would use my vegetarian stock where the dried mushrooms provide the umami. Perhaps some fresh mushrooms and other veg that are browned a bit for a good maillard reaction. 😉

And, yes, Ms. White has many issues. She must live a very sad life as she continues to be a danger to the health of children.

@ Justatech – I said the gelatin is the most nutritious part! Sugar is a simple carbohydrate. And yes I make my own stock. Homemade chicken soup is the first line of defense in my house. I’m not a vegan/vegetarian.

The point I was trying to make, Joel likes to virtue signal his animal rights, etc. but the contradictions! The way he argues, rationalizes and projects makes him appear to be a wishy-washy fraud. As I said before, he missed his calling. He would have been an excellent attorney.

Thanks for chiming in. You’re a breath of fresh air.

@ Natalie White

So what? As I wrote, I ate jello as a kid. And if my grandmother was alive today and offered it to me, because of my love for her, I would ignore what it is made of.

And agar is also used in petri dishes to grow bacteria. So what? Yep, I lived in Japan for six months, teaching conversational English and ate exclusively Japanese foods with Japanese first, well, almost exclusively, once a month would get pizza at all you can eat place.

And if I my car broke down in the middle of nowhere and I came across a cabin that had only foods with gelatin, rather than starve, I’d eat it. What would you do?

@ Natalie White

You are really DESPICABLE, as you write: “The point I was trying to make, Joel likes to virtue signal his animal rights, etc. but the contradictions! The way he argues, rationalizes and projects makes him appear to be a wishy-washy fraud. As I said before, he missed his calling. He would have been an excellent attorney.”

Attorneys can defend any position they are paid to defend. If one looks at, for instance, previous court decisions, one can usually find some on either side of an issue and juries can be swayed. Science is based on set rules. I base my decisions on these rules. And scientific research gives probabilities. If enough research then the chances it will be reversed become minuscule; but not zero; but rational scientifically based people know they have to make decisions, so we base our decisions on the overall evidence.

And as I continued to explain, yes, I strongly believe in animal rights; but as opposed to your ABSOLUTISM, I also value human life, limb, and sight. It is NOT a contradiction to do this, except you and your ilk. If you consider placing a higher value on human life, limb, and sight as rationalization and me as a “wishy-washy fraud,” for anyone who actually has followed this discussion, just shows you as a rigid ideologue who sees the world in extremes of black and white.

I just finished watching on Netflix a Swedish series Caliphate about ISIS. For them, anyone who even slightly disagrees is tortured or killed. They also see the world in extremes of black and white. Wouldn’t you like to start and head some equivalent group of anti-vaxxers?

And, besides eating or feeding food with gelatin in an emergency, I would even eat blood pudding or feed it to a starving infant. Not only I don’t like blood, but blood pudding is made from pig’s blood, so that would be breaking two Kosher laws, blood and pork. And almost all rabbls would agree. In fact, my late father told me years ago that his older sister was sick and the doctor recommended bacon, don’t know why; but my grandmother used separate dishes and frying pans. My grandparents were ORTHODOX JEWS from the old country; but saving the life of their child took priority. I guess you would consider them hypocrites.

And as for your not even knowing the difference between a calf and a fetus, just typical for you, really STUPID. And, though, as I wrote, the evidence whether a fetus feels pain or not is still not clear, once the mother has been killed, the fetus is going to die, so, until they come up with some other way to make vaccines, which I hope they do, getting it from the fetus just before it dies does not compete with a vaccines ability to save lives, prevent disabilities, and prevent suffering. And, by the way, if the fetus feels pain, it is for, at most, a second or two. Most people have felt pain for much longer. Last year I had surgery for Benign Prostate Hypertrophy. After surgery I had a catheter in me and bag attached to my leg and still walked my dog a mile twice daily, just slower than usual. It was extremely unpleasant as the catheter rubbed . . . I won’t go into details. And I’ve had my wisdom teeth taken out, refused general anesthesia, so just a local, not all that pleasant. So, again, I would like to end killing cows and especially the horrible way we treat them in CAFOs; but once they are dead, if anything positive can come of it, so be it.

So keep on proving just how rigid and extreme your world of black and white is.

I would like to end killing cows and especially the horrible way we treat them in CAFOs

This topic comes around periodically; one item of note is here.

@ Narad

First, the URL goes to one person’s opinion. Yep, not fed only grains; but numerous studies have found that grass fed beef much higher in Omega 3s. As for e-coli, risk much much higher from CAFOs. For instance, one hamburger may be mixture of meat from numerous animals. And it has been shown that the rumen changes pH as more grains eaten and changed pH allows growth of e-coli. Grains are NOT natural food for cows. CAFO lots loaded with feces, urine, etc. not exactly healthy environment. And, finally, however one looks at it, it is excessively cruel to raise animals in mainly limited spaces.

As for amount of meat eaten, yep, since 1950s and advent of large corporative operations, enabled by mass usage of antibiotic, currently 80% of antibiotics sold in U.S., has led to an exponential increase in antibiotic resistance infections, leading to more hospitalizations and deaths. I could go on and on; but, if even meat eaters were to lower their intake of meat to 1950s levels it would have a major effect on health, environment, and reduce animal cruelty. Health, because meat digests slowly in intestine, increased risk of colorectal cancer, increased risk of cardiovascular disease, etc. And cows farts, methane, responsible for up to 10% of global warming and 20% of tropical forests have been cut down, partially to increase meat production, thus removing the very trees that could absorb CO2. In various ways, our government subsidizes meat industry, instead could subsidize growing of plant-based foods. So, with lower intake of beef, if prices rise, most will be able to afford it. The more plant-based foods eaten, the healthier our population, lowered medical costs, etc. etc. etc.

So, you can rely on one article written giving one person’s opinion with a short reference list; but I’ve been looking at this issue for probably 40 years.

numerous studies have found that grass fed beef much higher in Omega 3s

I’m on hold with SSA, so I can’t do it in detail right now, but all beeves are grass-fed (or silage-fed, depending on season). The question is finishing.

This hold music is going to drive me crazy, and I have nearly an hour to go. As for this being an anecdotal report, which it certainly is, how many CAFOs have you visited?

@ Narad

I haven’t visited any CAFOs; but read dozen of articles. In fact, some CAFOs won’t let people visit, so certain groups have snuck on; but if caught face trespassing charges. Since the one in the article you referred to is family-owned, doesn’t even reflect on the corporate owned.

I haven’t visited any CAFOs; but read dozen of articles. In fact, some CAFOs won’t let people visit, so certain groups have snuck on

Infiltration of the Rubashkin enterprise is one of the few good things that PETA has managed, although it wound up being an Al Capone moment, with the operation being charged with employing illegal immigrants. I think the late Failed Messiah blog may be archived somewhere, but I’m nearing getting off hold.

While I’m at it (with luck, only 40 more minutes on hold), I will note that one big problem is the shortage of mobile abattoirs, or MSUs, which reduce stress on the animals. Temple Grandin is another side issue on this front, as is Agriprocessors (glatt); she eventually stated that shechita might be OK. Personally, I wouldn’t trust a shochet as far as I could throw him.

@ Narad

Several exchanges ago I pointed out that much of the negative claims regarding PETA were posted by fronts for the beef industry. Some were valid; but most weren’t and despite what you and others choose to believe, PETA has done a lot more good than bad.

As for a shocker, when I lived in Israel, despite being a vegetarian, I witnessed a schochet. It was pleasant to watch; but the animals was treated kindly, then one swift cut to the jugular. As I mentioned in a previous comment, according to Jewish law, if the blade has even a small nick, then the animal can’t be used for food. Having seen how animals are slaughtered in CAFOs, I would prefer a schochet. In CAFOs, for instance, pigs, highly intelligent animals know what is happening and begin squeezing. Evidence also indicates that they sometimes fail to kill the animals; yet begin cutting them up and on and on it goes. Even films of animals who fall just being shoved by a bulldozer.

So, quite frankly, I don’t give a shit what you think of PETA or schochets! ! !

I would, however, prefer animals weren’t killed at all; but a schochet in many cases is preferable.

Tbh probably the best way to kill a pig is to shoot it in the head at point blank range; I’m pretty sure that’s what my dad used to do when we had pigs (take it off somewhere first). They don’t know what guns are, don’t see it coming, split second, dead. I mean, if you’re gonna do it.

@ JP

However, if one kills several pigs in a row, they are quite intelligent and will panic. So, yep, one pig with a well-aimed shot to the head probably best approach; but only one without other pigs close by.

Pigs are really smart; they can be really cute, too, especially when they’re little, and they have personalities. That’s why we quit having them, I would get too attached.

Idk, I’ll still eat bacon or sausage or whatever if it’s, like, on offer. The preserved stuff doesn’t bother me as much psychologically for whatever reason.

I liked the calves, too, but that attachment tended to fade to a degree once they got big; a full grown bovine of any sort is an intimidating animal.

There are still a couple I remember by name, though, probably because they were twins and “Boss” didn’t have enough milk, so we had to also feed them calf formula out of giant baby bottles.

@ JP

When I was studying psychology, various tests put pigs as smarter than dogs. I have a neighbor who had a pet miniature pig and a couple of dogs. He moved; but used to see the cute little pig along with dog in front yard. I think it was called a Julian pig??? And there was another small breed pig that people have had as pets. I think they were called Southeast Asian Potbellied Pigs?

I have a cousin who has a potbellied pig as a bet, yeah. They’re definitely not minature and you need plenty of space for them; so-called “tea-cup” pigs are a scam, just piglets that will eventually get big enough to be unmanageable for most people.

Rather than “Southeast Asian” I have usually heard “Vietnamese,” but probably same thing.

@ JP

“The Juliana Pig is a small colorful pig thought to originate in Europe through selective breeding of various kinds of pigs. The Juliana Pig, also known as the Miniature Painted Pig, is small, spotted, and conformationally sound.” So, they are small.

Honey, “small” in porcine terms is not miniature by any means. These aren’t house pets, and you definitely can’t keep them in an apartment. We’re talking 100-200 pounds here, at least for a potbelly pig. Yeah, they’re small compared to a 1000 pound hog, but they aren’t little.

I mean, if you have one and you do keep it cooped up in an apartment, I’d consider that abuse. Pigs weren’t really ever bred to be pets, although they do enjoy human company to some extent; in the wild they were prey, and their instincts are to run from unfamiliar sounds, hide, etc., plus they need to root around and dig and investigate things. Locking them up inside is just cruel.

I don’t know how long your friend has had the pig, but they can take years to reach their full size, which can be quite, despite what the breeders/sellers claim. See this site for more info:

https://www.teacuppig.info/

Idk, it’s kind of a pet subject (no pun intended, for once), for some reason.

So, they are small.

Deep. What I can’t figure out, though, is why some 50 or so people have bothered to change “thought to originate in” to “originating in.”

despite what the breeders/sellers claim

After the movie “Babe” come into being, wasn’t there a fad of adopting pet pigs, and plenty of people found the hard way that their baby pigs keep on growing beyond “miniature”?

Possibly, I was quite young at the time. I know there was a big spike after Paris Hilton made it a fad.

JULIANA PIGS ARE SMALL! ! !

From Cincinnati zoo website: “The Juliana pig should be between 20 – 40 pounds. No Juliana should be over 65 lbs when mature. Height ranges from 10-16 inches and length from chest to base of tail is 12-26 inches.”

My neighbor had the pig for over half dozen years before he moved, so was full grown.

NOTE. You can see a full grown Julian pig with a cat at: https://www.julianapig.com/Index.html

They are cute, highly intelligent and trainable, AND can be litter trained. And I watched my neighbors pig play with his dogs.

I wish people who posted comments would at least do their homework!

Whatever. Doesn’t change the fact that they’re pigs and not cats or dogs.

Don’t f*cking talk down to me, Mr. Nose-in-the-air.

You want a pet, adopt one of the many homeless dogs or cats out there that need a loving home and actually are adapted to being pets instead of jumping on some stupid fad bandwagon. I wish people who talked about farm animals had actually been to a damn farm once in their lives or at least put some thought into the nature of different kinds of animals.

God, I mean, it isn’t nearly as bad, but it kind of reminds me of the damned idiots who just have to have a wolf/dog hybrid for a pet and keep having them bred. That’s not an animal that honestly should exist; it can’t live with humans and it can’t really live in the wild, either. The idiots who have them think they’re really hot sh*t until the dog gets sick of their bullsh!t and bites their face or hand off. Those dogs don’t see humans as alphas and they never will; you fail to show them the utmost respect and bad things will happen. And even if you do, you’re still playing with fire.

Life ain’t a Disney movie. There are plenty of critters out there that will kill you without a second thought if they’re hungry or you p!ss them off. Raccoons are cute to watch, but, as the kids say, “f*ck around and find out” if you cross one (plus they can carry rabies.) Genius animals, though.

A baby bear is cute but you sure don’t want a full grown one in your house. Moose, despite being herbivores, are not to be trifled with.

And so on.

@ Narad

First, how do you know it was photo shopped? My previous next door neighbor had the sweetest pit bull. One day an adult cat came on the property. As weird as it sounds, from then on the adult cat and pit bull slept together. I know where kittens and puppies have been raised together that they often get along; but this was incredibly unusual.

And I could have given links to several more websites with photos of just how cute Juliana pigs are and where one could judge their size. And the website photos looked EXACTLY like the one my neighbor had.

Why are you being a jerk? Do you suffer from oppositional disorder?

Oh cool, now you’re attempting to diagnose psychiatric disorders. Wow, very cool, very smart, you must be a real expert there, apparently you’ve got the ethics down pat, too.

First, how do you know it was photo shopped [sic]?

Have you noticed that it has no background? The image of the pig has obviously been clumsily smoothed (most noticeable at top), and the shadow on the cat makes no sense given the purported positioning. I leave any further forensics to Smut Clyde if he checks in.

My previous next door neighbor had the sweetest pit bull. One day an adult cat came on the property. As weird as it sounds, from then on the adult cat and pit bull slept together.

This is a non sequitur.

Oh, wait, it wasn’t Photoshop; it was GIMP, based on the EXIF data. It was last modified on 2012 January 27.

From Cincinnati zoo website: “The Juliana pig should be between 20 – 40 pounds. No Juliana should be over 65 lbs when mature….”

That’s G—le copypasta. That article is long gone from the actual site.

@ Narad

Yep, all I could copy was the brief description from Google search; but I found several other descriptions that were quite similar.

Again, do you suffer from oppositional disorder, just like to find irrelevant trivial faults?

@ JP

You write: “Whatever. Doesn’t change the fact that they’re pigs and not cats or dogs. Don’t f*cking talk down to me, Mr. Nose-in-the-air.

First, I responded to your wrong claim about size. As for they are not cats or dogs, so what? I have friends who own horses, including Shetlands and others who own parrots and cockateels and pet goats. Are you against that?

You also wrote: “You want a pet, adopt one of the many homeless dogs or cats out there that need a loving home and actually are adapted to being pets instead of jumping on some stupid fad bandwagon. I wish people who talked about farm animals had actually been to a damn farm once in their lives or at least put some thought into the nature of different kinds of animals.”

First, I have a dog adopted from a rescue group 10 years ago. A dog that a local shelter was going to euthanize. Second, I spent several weeks on a farm many years ago. A friend’s grandparents had a farm and we went and stayed with them. And when a cub scout we visited a farm.

As for talking down to you, your responses tell me that it is you who is hostile and think the world revolves around you. By the way, pigs have been trained as service animals, so have mini-horses. Got something against that? And some people may be allergic to dogs and/or cats; but not pigs. And if you want farm animals, dogs were first used for guard duty and hunting, then used for herding and cats to keep the rats and mice populations down, in fact, long before before becoming pets. And some countries eat dog meat. I find that disgusting; but. . . So, if having a more open accepting point-of-view and getting my facts right means I’m “Mr. Nose-in-the-air”, fine by me.

One pet is enough for this old man; but if I wanted a second pet, I might even consider a Juliana pig since they get along with dogs and are highly intelligent. And I live in a small home with a nice little back yard. However, I sleep in a twin bed and my 42 lb Aussie takes up most of it. Wouldn’t have space for a second pet.

ADDENDUM

Actually my first dog from when I was 2 1/2 was from the local pound, what they called shelters then. And my family has had several “rescue” dogs since. However, when they lived in apartments, they adopted stray cats, who moved in with them. My grandparents also adopted stray cats.

And, actually, as my old memory comes back, several school classes visited farms. But I also read a lot and watch documentaries and nature programs.

In addition, I have been a vegetarian starting late teens, then vegan 10 years ago. Partly because my abhorrence to animal cruelty.

So, you assumed wrongly that I didn’t have rescue dogs or cats and that I’ve never been to a farm.

In other words, you are a really stupid person who assumes facts not in evidence in addition to being wrong about the size and weight of Juliana pigs.

In addition, I have been a vegetarian starting late teens, then vegan 10 years ago.

Yes, you have mentioned this ad nauseam. At this point, you might as well segue into the phenomenology of your bowel movements.

I have a whole bunch of years of vegetarianism (including “near-veganism,” which I understand doesn’t really count) under my belt; sometimes circumstances don’t allow for it. But cruelty to animals doesn’t just mean not eating them, and there are places in cultures where you have to. There are other forms of cruelty.

Seriously, I’m starting to think you’re just a jagoff who thinks he’s better than and knows more than literally everybody.

@ JP

So, raccoons bite and can have rabies. Well so can dogs. Several cities in U.S. have outlawed pit bulls. During the 1950s pit bulls were the favorite dog for families with small children. I actually have a picture of my mother about 10 years of age with the original Little Rascals dog, Petey, a pit bull. Unscrupulous despicable people take them as puppies, brutalize them, and use them for fighting; but rescue groups have gotten hold of them, one on one retrained them and placed them in families with small children. We are even lied to about pit bulls having strongest bite, around 1500 lbs per square inch. A Rottweilers has over 2,000 lbs per square inch. A friend working with a rescue group got hold of a pit bull and asked if I would take it. It was found abandoned and her other dogs bullied it. A vet thought it was abandoned because it wouldn’t fight. I wanted to take it; but my insurance wouldn’t cover it, not even if I paid for a rider. Kids have gotten on my property and if they kicked the dog and he bit them, well, I could lose everything. So, I didn’t take the dog and another rescue group brought me my current Aussie. Another dog who is tops in biting is chihuahua.

But, people have been bitten, even harmed by dogs. And wild dogs can have rabies. And another animal that has become a pet, though historically was domesticated millennia ago, is the ferret. Illegal in California; but my cousins in Arkansas had one, their small kids loved it.

You think by bringing up extreme examples that you make a valid argument, au contraire. Dogs can bite and so can cats. And parrots can be quite vicious to anyone but their one owner. Even in a litter of dogs, some will be more gentle and some more aggressive. Same in human families. Herman Goering was one of the architects of the Holocaust and his younger brother Albert rescued over 1,000 Jews. When he was arrested at end of WWII, Jews flew from Israel to testify in his behalf. Al Capone was a vicious gangster, murderer, his brother James Capone went out west where he became a respected law enforcement officer. One can always come up with extreme negative examples.

You seem quite hysterical, irrational, and the fact that when I corrected your error about weight of Juliana pigs, and mentioned positive things about them, you attacked, tells me a lot about you. People may disagree with me; but I presented in a logical, rational, and common sense comment.

I actually have a picture of my mother about 10 years of age with the original Little Rascals dog, Petey, a pit bull.

Sigh.

Dogs can bite and so can cats.

The Deuce you say! Oh, wait, I have a stash of Augmentin for a reason.

You seem quite hysterical

Yah, a “a logical, rational, and common sense comment.”

@Joel:

None of your blather has jack sh!t to do with anything, and you seem to be unteachable; having been almost completely cooped up for quite a while and staying with my family of origin in the middle of nowhere, I am simply not in the fcking mood* for your condescension and mindless non-sequitors about pitbulls lying down with cats (again, nothing to do with absolutely anything), so I’m going to stop even reading you before I get even more short than I already have, although I might read Narad’s (astute as always) replies.

@ JP

The point I was making with the pit bull and cat was simply that even within species or breeds, there is a wide range. I guess that was beyond your ability to understand. And I repeat, you are really stupid to keep attacking me, to make statements about rescue dogs and visiting farms, which show just how nuts you are.

If you consider what I write, that I assume is for normal levels of intelligence is condescension, that says quite a bit about you.

By the way, are you in therapy? I guess, due to the pandemic, you’ve missed some appointments. Oh well.

ADDENDUM

@ JP and Narad

As I wrote, Pit Bulls are banned in many cities and in other cities, home owners insurance will not cover them. While I love my current dog and loved all my previous dogs, I would have loved the Pit Bull my friend wanted me to take. So, I gave a number of examples showing that Pit Bulls can be great dogs, not dangerous dogs. Shelters are overfilled with them because people won’t adopt them because of their false reputation and they are being euthanized. This sickens me. So, you JP, ranting about adopting rescue dogs, instead of worrying about a few people choosing other animals for pets, why not fight to overturn laws against Pit Bulls and refusal of insurance companies to cover them with home owner’s insurance? Why not work to educate the public on just how great they can be? And you, Narad, instead of trying to understand the point I was making, think yourself clever by taking out-of-context individual quotes from my comments. Not clever, just absurd. And, while I explained my ideas and opinions in a straightforward manner, all you can do JP is cuss. Pathetic.

You are both despicable excuses for human beings.

By the way, what have either of you done for animals or fellow human beings?

I’ve volunteered at soup kitchens, and am a regular blood donor. Despite being in my mid-70s, last Sunday I drove to blood center and donated blood because they said there was a shortage.

By the way, what have either of you done for animals or fellow human beings?

Oh, I missed this glowing ray of asshurt. More the fuck than you have, I’d wager, on both counts. Have you ever bottle-raised a kitten? Rescued and placed six and their mother that some asshole tried to “store” in a park within the confines of a one-bedroom apartment with your own cats? (Hint: I did not get to shower often.) Cared for a blind cat? Given sub-Q fluids? Worked seven days a week in a subterranean cat rescue? Keep a stash of Augmentin around?

I value the privacy of the people I’ve helped, so that’s all you’re going to get, Betsy Wetsy.

I believe Uncle Smut can attest to the challenges and joys of rescuing a nest of “hissie-spitties” (feral kittens.)

As to myself, if we keep the subject just to cats, only two rescues so far (just showed up, as cats often do.) One I’m pretty sure was an abandoned housecat, judging by how friendly and snuggly and house trained he is (no litter box, it creates more problems than it might solve, he goes in and out, I figure he spent a good deal of his life outdoors anyhow, seems mean to make him be an indoor cat), the other I think is a feral barn cat from a neighbor who moved away (probably more a factor of impossibility of capture/transport than oversight, plus he was a really old dude fairly recently widowed, idk.)

Two cats is about all I can take care of; a man’s got to know his limits. (The cat social dynamics are also a thing.)

By the way, are you in therapy? I guess, due to the pandemic, you’ve missed some appointments. Oh well.

Jesus Fucking Christ. Go check with fucking PETA about the pigs; you have passed the point of no return here.

@ Narad & JP

Excellent. No, I haven’t saved even close as many cats as you. My grandparents and parents did, e.g. finding an abandoned liter, taking care of them, then finding them homes, included bottle feeding them. So, I sincerely applaud what you have done. It was a simple question. Now, I am waiting to hear a response from JP.

The reference to therapy was directed to JP; but since you also can’t be civil, maybe it applies to you as well.

No response to the horrible slaughter of Pit Bulls? I wrote a sincere concern for the demonization of this breed and all you can do is cuss and refer to PETA.

Why are you so upset if some people choose to own a pig for a pet? Don’t you have better things to do than focus on such trivia. As I explained above, people also own goats, horses, and many other animals as pets. Do you think that you and JP should determine what people can own as pets?

And JP wrote:

” it kind of reminds me of the damned idiots who just have to have a wolf/dog hybrid for a pet and keep having them bred. That’s not an animal that honestly should exist; it can’t live with humans and it can’t really live in the wild, either. The idiots who have them think they’re really hot sh*t until the dog gets sick of their bullsh!t and bites their face or hand off. ”

JP is probably unaware that various research centers around the world have raised Wolf puppies, literally hand feeding them, then researched their intelligence, “personality” etc. I’ve never heard of one of these researchers being attacked. They appear from documentaries and articles I’ve read reasonably tame. In fact, 30 miles from my home is a Wolf center where people can go in and pet them. However, though research found them more intelligent than dogs, when in a room, dogs would spend much more time in vicinity of people. The point is, if pure Wolves raised from puppies don’t attack, then if the mixed breeds are raised properly, risk is low. I’m sure if one searches hard enough there has been a case or two where the Wolves bit someone; but then I can find for almost every breed of dog dozens of cases of bites. Personally, if someone wants a Wolf mixed breed and have a good fenced in area and no children, that is their choice. We don’t outlaw various sports that people get injured in, stock car racing, etc. The latest TV documentary than includes Wolves is PBS NOVA DOG TALES. About an hour and highly informative. NOVA also has another excellent documentary CAT TALES.

And JP probably doesn’t know that, for instance, Alaskan Huskies are less evolved from Wolves than many other breeds. I have had friends who own Huskies, beautiful dogs; but have been known to sometimes change, get aggressive. So what? Should we only allow the breeds that are the least likely to hurt anyone? Well, there goes German Shepherd, Rotweilers, and several others.

So, since in the past Narad you have come across as more rational and open-minded, I can, hopefully, only assume that the current situation of being isolated has affected your mentality, that the recent posts do not reflect who you really are.

As for JP ? ? ?

Again NARAD, glad to hear you have devoted so much to animals; but, though I haven’t come close, I have tried to help people, blood donations approaching 100, volunteer at soup kitchens, and recently phoned one food bank if I could help. Nope, so this coming week will phone a couple of others. Keep in mind that being in my mid-70s that I am more at risk. And in seven weeks will probably donate blood again.

And I hope that the recent comments aren’t the real you.

@ JP

Glad to hear you rescued some cats. But you still fail to acknowledge that all that I did was correct that some breeds of pigs aren’t large, 50 lbs in Juliana pigs isn’t more than a medium size dog. And you still fail to acknowledge, to admit, that people have a right to whatever pet they want, you shouldn’t be the judge, and you still haven’t acknowledged that your attacks on me were way beyond justified. All I did was explain clearly my position. And you refuse to acknowledge your use of extreme examples, e.g., raccoon, rabies, etc.

And you haven’t said anything about the euthanizing Pit Bulls because of a completely false reputation. As, among other things, I stated that during the 1950s they were the dog of choice for families with small children.

Maybe, as I said with NARAD, the current situation has frayed your nerves and you really aren’t as irrational and hostile as your previous comments reflect. I hope so.

Again, I love dogs and cats; but also horses, Juliana pigs, goats (my dad’s best friend when I was a kid had a pet goat), and all animals. As I suggested to NARAD, watch PBS NOVA programs: DOG TALES and CAT TALES. Also, a great two part series on horses, EQUUS. I always thought dogs best animal at paying attention and reading humans. Turns out horses are better. If I lived in country and could afford it, I would own a horse, a goat, a Julians pig, and, of course, a dog.

And I applaud your rescuing cats. I would love to rescue more than one dog at a time; but I have limited resources and am old, so one dog at a time is all I can deal with. As I mentioned, a shelter was going to euthanizing him, so I have had some vet bills; but he is worth it. First night I got him he slept with me.

Oh FFS. I slipped up and saw some parts of your inane replies.

I’ve done a lot more than rescue cats, jerk; when it comes to humans, too many things to count or list (not that my memory is great right now anyway), including some things at risk or at a price. The whole point is that wanting an animal “because it is cute” and “I want one” isn’t remotely the same as actually thinking of an animal’s welfare and happiness; it’s pure selfishness. It’s like that one spoiled brat character in Willy Wonka who ends up turning into a blueberry or whatever. “But Daddy, I want it!”

Pitbulls are dogs. I don’t know if you’re aware of this, but wolf/dog hybrids are not the same as Malamutes or Huskies; they’re literally the offspring of a wolf mated with a dog. You could try, oh, idk, “doing your homework,” as you have so condescendingly suggested to me. And pitbulls are, in fact, a complicated breed; a small part of it seems to be genetic, but there are also pitbulls raised to be vicious by awful humans who probably really can’t live around people, sadly. Again, life isn’t Disney.

Idk, maybe try some actual empathy.

As far as all your other good deeds, nah, I haven’t donated blood. It’d be a bad idea, considering I’ve been sick (including sinus and lung infections) all winter, which could, idk, make other people sick, for example. Also a risk for me. Also there’s the epilepsy, which has become a pretty severe condition. I’m not exactly “low risk” myself.

Personally I don’t believe that standing in the town square braying about all your own good deeds is exactly a virtue. I think I read it somewhere.

PS: I’m not sure how long you’ve been around here, but it is not exactly unusual for Narad to argue, including with friendliest

You seem to have crossed some lines, though.

@ JP

You write: “Oh FFS. I slipped up and saw some parts of your inane replies. . . Pitbulls are dogs. I don’t know if you’re aware of this, but wolf/dog hybrids are not the same as Malamutes or Huskies; they’re literally the offspring of a wolf mated with a dog. You could try, oh, idk, “doing your homework,” as you have so condescendingly suggested to me.”

You really are a MORON. I made it clear that I am aware that wolves and mixtures aren’t dogs. But I also pointed out that if raised as puppies, Wolves can be safe. You seem to have missed this. And I also explained that it is unscrupulous people who brutalize Pitbulls, leading to their undeserved reputation. So, I have done my homework. I explained clearly my opinion based on my homework, including even referring to a PBS program that included info on wolves, though I have seen a number of other documentaries and read articles on them.

I guess when one is as stupid as you that any reply that actually explains things is inane.

Despite everything, I do applaud you having rescued more animals; but that doesn’t change the fact that you are a vicious, moron.

And you still won’t accept that you have NO right to dictate what animals others choose to have as pets. You wouldn’t by chance to be an admirer of Adolf Hitler? He didn’t accept any disagreements either. His way or . . .

While I’m sorry about your health problems because I value all life, humans and animals, I pointed out what I have done, including adopting rescue dogs, donating blood, as a response to your vicious moronic attacks on me as a person.

You must be an extremely unhappy person! ! !

@ JP

Once again, you wrote: “Oh FFS. I slipped up and saw some parts of your inane replies.”

So, you really didn’t carefully read what I wrote; but responded all the same. Proof you are both stupid and unethical. I always read carefully what people write, sometimes twice, before responding.

As for thinking of animals welfare, I have found quite a few articles on Juliana pigs and they often do quite well in human households. Again, you assume that all dog breeds act similarly. Some don’t do so well, some do extra well, and some in between. Many people live in apartments and leave dogs alone all day. When I lived in an apartment, didn’t own a dog. Now, have yard, play frisby with him, walk him twice daily, etc. As for Alaskan Huskies being dogs, not wolves, they have many genes in common and one could label them part dog as they are less evolved from wolves than many other dog breeds. Labels don’t encompass everything. You see the world in black and white, I see shades of gray. I don’t expect people to live exactly as I do and agree with everything I believe. I’ll bet you love Donald Trump, either for him or against him. People who allegedly were his friends for decades, supported everything he did, disagree once with him and “friendship” over. Well, the world doesn’t revolve around you.

And once again, you ignore that using raccoons and rabies was a really stupid use of an extreme example. I don’t know of anyone who has a raccoon for a pet. Do you? Just another example of your foolish world of extremes of black and white.

Thanks for making it absolutely clear that your comments aren’t based on careful considering what others write.

Want to respond to Orac? Here's your chance. Leave a reply!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.