Tag: Hillary Simpson

Who is the Controlled Opposition in the Anti-Vax Movement?

Anti-vax folks are big on conspiracy theories.

How far do they go?

They think that some anti-vax folks are part of a controlled opposition.

Who is the Controlled Opposition in the Anti-Vax Movement?

Controlled opposition?

“The best way to control the opposition is to lead it ourselves.”

Vladimir Lenin

Have folks who support getting kids vaccinated and protected actually become leaders of the anti-vaccine movement?

Robert Kennedy, Jr is the only one in his family to ever come out against vaccines...
Robert Kennedy, Jr is the only one in his family to ever come out against vaccines…

Why would they do that?

One reason might be to control the opposition. Get them to do what you want. Another might be to do things that are so outrageous that you make the opposition look bad.

Getting arrested for pushing Senator Pan?

Is Kenneth Austin Bennett a part of the controlled opposition?
Is Kenneth Austin Bennett a part of the controlled opposition?

That guy must be part of the controlled opposition!

Wait, is Austin Bennett controlled opposition or is it Joshua Coleman?
Wait, is Austin Bennett or Joshua Coleman the controlled opposition? Is WAKEsheep alerting folks that Andrew Wakefield is being controlled?

Lose a lawsuit to repeal SB 277.

The lawyer must be a part of the controlled opposition!

Who organized the march?
Who organized the march?

Is everyone in the anti-vax movement a part of the controlled opposition?

Who started the infighting between Larry Cook and Brandy Vaughan?
Who started the infighting between Larry Cook and Brandy Vaughan?

Is there anyone in the anti-vax movement that you think vaccine supporters are controlling?

Is there a conspiracy theory that this guy doesn't believe? Have nanobots in vaccines turned him into a member of the controlled opposition without him knowing???
Is there a conspiracy theory that this guy doesn’t believe? Have nanobots in vaccines turned Chris Kirckof into a member of the controlled opposition without him knowing???

Does this whole idea just seem silly?

I’m sure that’s what “they” want you to think!

More on Conspiracy Theories in the Anti-Vax Movement

Why Do We Include SSPE When Counting Measles Deaths?

Anti-vaccine folks often like to push the idea that parents shouldn’t worry about measles and that it is just a rash with a little fever.

They leave out the part that it is a week of having a high fever, irritability, and other symptoms too.

In addition to downplaying the symptoms of measles, they never talk about the possible complications, such as encephalitis, seizures, and death.

Why Do We Include SSPE When Counting Measles Deaths?

They certainly never talk about SSPE or subacute sclerosing panencephalitis.

“Subacute sclerosing panencephalitis (SSPE) is a progressive neurological disorder of children and young adults that affects the central nervous system (CNS). It is a slow, but persistent, viral infection caused by defective measles virus.”

Subacute Sclerosing Panencephalitis Information Page

SSPE is a late complication of having a natural measles infection.

That’s why it should be included when counting measles deaths.

“Available epidemiological data, in line with virus genotyping data, do not suggest that measles vaccine virus can cause SSPE. Furthermore, epidemiological data do not suggest that the administration of measles vaccine can accelerate the course of SSPE or trigger SSPE in an individual who would have developed the disease at a later time without immunization. Neither can the vaccine lead to the development of SSPE where it would not otherwise have occurred in a person who has already a benign persistent wild measles infection at the time of vaccination.”

Subacute sclerosing panencephalitis and measles vaccination

It is not a complication of having a measles containing vaccine. If it were, then why didn’t we see more cases of SSPE as more and more people got vaccinated, instead of a drop in SSPE cases and deaths, corresponding to a drop in measles cases?

But SSPE isn’t gone yet, just like measles hasn’t yet been eradicated.

32 of these SSPE deaths have been since 2000. Source is the CDC Wonder database.
32 of these SSPE deaths have been since 2000. Source is the CDC Wonder database.

Since 2000, when the endemic spread of measles was eliminated in the United States, there have been at least 37 SSPE deaths.

“Investigators learned that, in 2012, at age 11 years, the boy, who was previously healthy and developmentally normal, had been admitted to a tertiary care children’s hospital in Oregon with severe, progressive encephalopathy. Before the onset of his neurologic illness, the patient had been a straight-A, fifth-grade student who played soccer and basketball. The symptoms began approximately 4 months before the hospital admission, when the patient began to struggle with homework, drop utensils, and doze off during meals, eventually progressing to falling asleep while walking.”

Notes from the Field: Subacute Sclerosing Panencephalitis Death — Oregon, 2015

I say at least, because the CDC Wonder database doesn’t list the 2015 SSPE death of a boy in Oregon.

Anti-vaccine folks like to ignore the fact that yes, people have died of measles recently. And measles puts you at risk for SSPE, which is always fatal.
Anti-vaccine folks like to ignore the fact that yes, people have died of measles recently. And measles puts you at risk for SSPE, which is always fatal.

We are fortunate that no one has died since 2015, but as we get more and more measles cases, tragically, in addition of the risk of someone dying of measles directly, it increases the risk that someone will eventually develop SSPE.

“Decreasing rates of vaccination in the United States, particularly among preschool-aged children (children <5 years of age) living in inner-city areas, resulted in a resurgence in the number of cases of measles reported during 1989–1991; during this period, 55,622 cases of measles and 123 measles-associated deaths were reported.”

Bellini et al on Subacute Sclerosing Panencephalitis: More Cases of This Fatal Disease Are Prevented by Measles Immunization than Was Previously Recognized

Remember, there were at least 12 extra SSPE deaths following the large measles outbreaks of the late 1980s.

Will we see any after the rise in the cases the last few years?

Vaccines are safe, with few risks, and obviously necessary.

Don’t risk a complication of measles. Don’t risk getting SSPE.

More on SSPE Deaths

The CDC Vaccine Price List Conspiracy is Officially Dead

You remember the CDC Vaccine Price List Conspiracy, right?

The birth of a new anti-vaccine conspiracy theory!
The birth of a new anti-vaccine conspiracy theory!

After all, they just made it up last week..

Anyway, it was notable for not only being one of the sillier conspiracy theories anti-vaccine folks have come up with lately, but for spawning a secondary conspiracy theory that was even worse.

Apparently you can make up your own anti-vaccine conspiracy theories.
You can’t make this stuff up – apparently you can…

Yes, they thought that there “was so much hysteria around measles” because the vaccines were expiring.

The CDC Vaccine Price List Conspiracy is Officially Dead

Of course, MMR vaccine isn’t expiring…

This box of MMR was received in March 2019 and doesn’t expire until October 2020.

And those expiring contracts?

They were renewed! Just like they are every year.

So did everyone stop talking about measles and getting folks vaccinated?

Are all of the measles outbreaks over? Do they still have medical martial law in New York?

Did you buy into this conspiracy theory? Although it was obviously ridiculous, it only took a few minutes of real research to find proof of why it was so ridiculous.

More on the CDC Vaccine Price List Conspiracy


The Dunning-Kruger Awards

Bob Sears posted his pic wearing Mickey Mouse ears a month before the big Disneyland measles outbreak...
This was posted a month before the big Disneyland measles outbreak…

Most folks understand, or think they understand, the Dunning-Kruger effect.

“Poor performers—and we are all poor performers at some things—fail to see the flaws in their thinking or the answers they lack.”

We Are All Confident Idiots

Not surprisingly, there are plenty of great examples of the Dunning-Kruger effect among vocal vaccine deniers.

The Dunning-Kruger Awards

But who leads the pack?

Smarter than the entire New York Public Health Department?

I don’t think so…

Yes, Forrest Maready, who came up with the Crooked Face Theory of vaccine injury, now considers himself to be an expert on polio.

Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. thinks that he is cursed with too much knowledge about vaccines…

Kelly Brogan, a holistic psychiatrist, got her case study published in the Advances in Mind-Body Medicine journal. History making? That’s about as history making as her vaccine paper that was published in the journal, Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine.

Full stop. There is a lot of good information on the Internet, but most folks who say they did their research about vaccines on Google choose “to accept only information that supports his or her position, and ignores or dismisses information in conflict with it.”

Will Jim Meehan ever understand vaccines better?

Will anyone that listens to these folks?

Don't let Goop's mistake become your mistake.

Gwyneth Paltrow and Goop made one mistake – thinking that they could give health advice.

The creator of the PEACH anti-vaccine safety manual that has been distributed in Orthodox Jewish communities spent years gathering anti-vaccine propaganda...
The creator of the PEACH anti-vaccine safety manual that has been distributed in Orthodox Jewish communities spent years gathering anti-vaccine propaganda…

While the average pediatrician doesn’t actively investigate vaccine safety, do you know who does? Real scientists and researchers…

Whether they put all of the anti-vaccine propaganda they gather into a binder or a vaccine guide on the Internet, these folks are simply misinformed about vaccines.

Don’t look to them to help get you educated about vaccines.

Dunning Kruger Awards