Opposition Strategies

Overview

During my participation in the Healthcare Freedom Movement in California over the past year, I have observed a recurring theme surrounding campaigns carried out by various activists. That theme is the idea that it is better to do something, ANYTHING, rather than pause while carefully selecting what to work on. Activists seem to be completely impulse driven in this regard. The idea of “measure twice, cut once” is straight out the window. The first idea presented is like that irresistible candy or tabloid in the checkout lane, and it must be had right now.

In my opinion, most of this impulse is based on trust in the leaders presenting campaign ideas. Activists ask themselves How can we go wrong with someone we trust? And they ask no further questions. Just jump on the bandwagon and demonize anyone who has any questions or suggestions to stop and think.

We need look no further than the various Healthcare Freedom campaigns of 2015 in California to see how well this approach is working for us.

Our three biggest failures of 2015 can be attributed to our collective failure to ask ourselves one simple question:

Is this an Opposition Strategy?

And speak up about it.

Disclaimer

Before I get started here, I want to specifically smash the idea that Opposition Strategies originate only from the Opposition. I am in no way at all suggesting that leaders who proffered the strategies are consciously employed by the opposition. Because that status is irrelevant when the strategy chosen supports the opposition. My only assertion is that all of us, including those leaders, failed to ask “Is this an opposition strategy?”.

What is an Opposition Strategy?

An Opposition Strategy is a strategy that gives aid or assistance to our enemies, those being Pharma, Politicians working against us, the Science Fraud Industrial Complex to name but a few. In essence, proponents of mandated medical procedures and opponents of Healthcare Freedom. This assistance may come as a direct result of either the campaign’s success or failure. Or it may come indirectly, a consequence of the campaign’s very existence or side effects of the campaign.

What are some examples of Opposition Strategies?

pan-cha-chingThe Recall Senator Pan campaign, as it was executed, was a great example of an Opposition Strategy. Due to California Campaign Finance Laws, a PAC established by a politician to defend against a recall can bypass the per-donor contribution limit (currently $4200) and instead, each donor can donate unlimited funds to that PAC.

So the end result of the Recall Pan effort is Senator Pan’s PAC collected over $125,000 to defend against the recall. Since the recall failed to get the requisite signatures to proceed to the ballot, Senator Pan’s PAC gets to pocket that money, and can contribute it later toward his re-election campaign and the re-election campaigns of other SB 277 proponents in our state legislature. He could also return the money, but I have a feeling those donors would rather have him keep it to fund their crusade against Healthcare Freedom.

The fact that this campaign was executed by individuals having no prior experience with recalling a politician also tilts the balance toward it being an opposition strategy. Is recalling Senator Pan inherently a bad idea? With the correct leadership and funding, it likely would have succeeded. A good first step for such a campaign would be to investigate the Senator, build a case against him and seek an indictment for his well-known misdeeds, then file the recall. That’s a campaign that would work.

SB 277 Referendum

The referendum in and of itself was an Opposition Strategy. We’ll skip over the very interesting drama about what is happening to the funds raised to support the SB 277 Referendum for now, and examine the mechanics of how a referendum works.

In California, by law, all of our referendums are “Veto Referendums”. That means, if a given referendum is put on the ballot, it will be an up or down vote by the people of the law itself.

The first problem with the mechanics of a referendum is, if you are in favor of the referendum, you must vote No at the ballot box. Because a Yes vote is a vote in favor of the law. A No vote counts toward vetoing the law. So there is some basic voter education overhead that can be difficult to overcome.

The second problem with the SB 277 Referendum effort, it needed to have tens of millions of dollars to spend on an education campaign to convince voters there is no need for this law, that preserving rights is more important than the occasional contracting of minor diseases they are already scared to death about, and to vote No in November. This of course is a very optimistic view that Pharma would not counter such efforts with ten times as much cash, to scare the shit out of everyone that they and their children will die and die tomorrow unless they vote Yes. And we all know pharma would happily spend that cash. We must be realistic on this point, Prop 37 was defeated by a 3-day campaign that convinced voters that changing the artwork for labels (a routine and ongoing expense in the food industry) would make groceries unaffordable. Imagine the effect of slogans like “Voting NO = DEATH”.

Going forward…

We need to carefully consider our strategies for employing our limited finances and resources in the most realistic and productive way possible. If we do that and lose we will at least know we did not invest time, energy and money into efforts that substantially aid our enemies. Really, they don’t need our help. And we can then dust ourselves off and try again, against an enemy that was not strengthened by our previous effort.

Each of us needs to seek information about any given strategy, and once that is obtained, ask these questions:

  • Am I willing to look past the personality of the leader or leaders presenting a campaign idea and think critically about potential outcomes of their idea, both good and bad?
  • What are the possible outcomes of this campaign?
  • Will any of those outcomes offer substantial aid to the enemy?
  • Are the goals of the campaign realistic? Or is this busy work aka force depletion for our movement?
  • Is the campaign easily defeated simply by Pharma spending money?
  • Are people shouting down others who have legitimate questions about the strategy?
  • And, finally: Is this an opposition strategy?

It is better to discard a mediocre idea and reserve our resources for the great idea that will inevitably develop if we are patient and thoughtful enough.

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SB 277 Refunderendum?

Deciphering the chatter

There has been a lot of back-and-forth about what happened to the money contributed to the now-failed SB 277 Referendum. Amid a huge backlash of disillusionment, possibly true accusations of pharma infiltration of the campaign, the integrity of various individuals being called into question, it’s really more drama than you would expect from a telenovela marathon over a 3-day weekend.

cal-access.sos.ca.gov

Some people have been looking beneath the surface. Notably again, California activist Andrew Liebich, who is quite skilled at using the California Secretary of State’s Cal-Access website, has been sharing recently-filed reports via social media. The Cal-Access site provides easy access to public campaign records. A skill your average activist, or others with concerns would do well to learn for themselves. Find the FPPC ID of that campaign that has captivated your curiosity and give it a try sometime. Just plug that ID into the search box and click away.

Every campaign for election, referendum, recall or political initiative is required to file financials on a quarterly basis, via California Form 460. Yesterday was the deadline for the 460 to be filed on the SB 277 Referendum, and the information gleaned from this filing is used as the basis of reporting in this post.

Filing Requirements

Among the cacophony of noise surrounding the referendum have been rumblings about people who have donated to the referendum via GoFundMe receiving emails asking for some seemingly intimate private information. Information like their name, address, occupation and employer. This freaks some people out. I would advise against replying to any such email, it could just as easily be identity thieves or pharma operatives, as it is to be the Campaign Treasurer, Tim Donnelly. That said, if you have donated to the referendum and did not provide this information (because GoFundMe didn’t prompt you for it), you are required by law to provide that information, if you donated more than $25. You may want to contact Donnelly yourself via the email provided on the 460. I’m not posting the email here because you shouldn’t even trust this post. Read the 460 for yourself.

Are people getting refunds?

There have been some posts on various California Activist Facebook Groups where people have claimed they have been receiving refunds. Some have viewed these claims with skepticism, while others are optimistic. But what is the truth? A read of the 460 filing on January 29th reveals, YES some refunds have been issued. As we can see on Page 4 of the original filing[1], two persons received refunds of $100.00 each.

Untitled

 

Upon inspection of Amendment 1 of the filing[2], we can see another refund in the amount of $100.

untitled1

It would seem any rumblings about abuse of campaign funds are without merit as this document proves the campaign is issuing refunds.

Update: the campaign is issuing refunds, however, this video by Liebich illustrates how promises to use the funds for one purpose were later changed and funds were used for other purposes.

 

Are you seeking a refund?

I can’t speak on behalf of the SB 277 Referendum Committee, as I am not associated with it. What I can say is, you can find the contact information for the committee on the 460 forms linked in the Citations section below. You could seek a refund. If you are so inclined, you could donate your refund to one of these vaccine education campaigns, which are playing an essential role in this war against medical mandates: Learn The Risk (Billboards/web) or Stop Mandatory Vaccination (TV/web). There is a simple fact of reality, the campaign has had expenses: petition collectors, consultants, transaction processing fees, travel, lodging, etc., so if everyone demanded a refund the campaign would go bankrupt. You may want to consider asking for a partial refund that takes the expenses into account. Or maybe not. It is highly unlikely that every donor will ask for a refund.

Citations

  1. Committee for SB277 Referendum Recipient Committee Campaign Statement (F460), Original, filed 01-29-2016
    http://cal-access.sos.ca.gov/PDFGen/pdfgen.prg?filingid=2010578&amendid=0
  2. Committee for SB277 Referendum Recipient Committee Campaign Statement (F460), Amendment 1, filed 01-29-2016
    http://cal-access.sos.ca.gov/PDFGen/pdfgen.prg?filingid=1997729&amendid=1

Friends of Recall Pan – Your Cover is Blown

recall-cover-blown
See “Code Red Meme” at the end of the post if you need an explanation

Thanks to the investigative efforts of Andrew Liebich, a California-based vaccine activist, we now know of one stark, highly questionable connection between the Recall Pan 2.0 Campaign, known as “Friends in Support of Recall Pan” (FPPC ID #1380281, hereinafter referred to as “the PAC”) and a lawyer friendly to a politician who sponsored the 2015 Senate Bill 277.

The members of the PAC, according to the Friends in Support of Recall Pan website[1] are:

  • Janine Kloss, Principal Officer, Signer
  • Aaron Mills, Committee Member, Signer
  • Emily Henkel, Treasurer, Signer
  • Amber Beasley, Committee Member
  • Melonie Zarzuela, Committee Member

Liebich discovered a payment from the PAC to an attorney named Max Kanin. This can be viewed on Page 12 of 17 of the PAC’s filing of CA Form 460[2] or in this excerpt, that has been formatted for the small screen, here:

Screen Shot 2016-01-24 at 3.27.30 PM

You can also access the more interactive Secretary of State / Cal-Access website for more information about the PAC, here: http://cal-access.sos.ca.gov/Campaign/Committees/Detail.aspx?id=1380281&view=expenditures

On Kanin’s LinkedIn[3] page, he prominently lists being a campaigner for SB 277 co-sponsor Ben Allen’s campaign.

Screen Shot 2016-01-24 at 3.32.10 PM

All that by itself is not that startling. Attorneys represent many types of clients over their career, and are supposed to be zealous advocates for their clients. Clients with an enlightened self-interest usually pick attorneys who do not have overt conflicts of interest with their cause. And one would think it goes without saying, our movement does not want to financially reward someone who works for the other side. Maybe that’s just me.

That’s all well and good, however, referencing one of Kanin’s Tweets from September 2015, it is clear he is not shy about publicly pronouncing his firm belief in vaccines. While taking a moment to ridicule one of the few political candidates willing to take the unpopular position in this controversy, Kanin made sure to high-five his buddy and former employer, Senator Allen (@BenAllenCA).

12541135_10207483694263822_7987518055618280626_n

The PACs decision to hire Kanin is at best an incompetent failure in due diligence, and at worst, a case of enlightened self-interest. If you still think supporting Pan Recall 2.0 is a good idea, I encourage you to read our previous post, Recall Senator Pan 2.0: Should we or shouldn’t we?

The Code Red Meme

As Liebich began revealing this information on Vaccine Activist Facebook Groups like AWAKE CA, and Natural Immunity Community, PAC Committee Member Aaron Mills began running damage control for the PAC. At a certain point around when the Kanin/Trump Tweet emerged, Mills decided to remove himself from both of those Facebook Groups. It’s hard to deny the appearance of the jig is up, so he got the hell out of dodge in this cirumstance.

Citations

  1. Friends in Support of Recall Pan
  2. PAN; FRIENDS IN SUPPORT OF RECALL, Form 460 Filing (refer to page 12 of 17)
  3. Max Kanin’s LinkedIn Page

Recall Senator Pan 2.0: Should we or shouldn’t we?

Introduction

There has been much controversy revolving around the efforts to recall Senator Pan, a campaign waged by some of those who opposed SB 227, the vaccine mandate bill. Since SB 277 was ghostwritten by Pharma Lobbyists, and delivered to the legislature on pharma’s behalf by Senator Pan, some feel he should be made into an example to deter other legislators from following in his footsteps. This article seeks to explore the previous and upcoming recall efforts, as well as try to answer a question rarely heard amongst the vengeful mob: Should we even be attempting to recall Senator Pan?

Recall Pan, Chapter 1

The initial recall Pan effort has completely fizzled out, not garnering enough signatures to get the recall on the ballot. As would be expected, there is plenty of name calling and finger pointing to go around. I support the pursuit of truth inherent in various efforts, including Andrew Liebich’s petition[1] to the Sacramento County District Attorney, calling for an investigation into the apparently fraudulent activities of the original Pan Recall committee. Activities ranging from failure to timely report contributions and expenditures to regulators, to a YouTube mea culpa by Katherine O’Neal Duran, the citizen who filed the Pan Recall Petition with the Secretary of State. In said video, she admits she never intended for the recall to succeed in the first place. Click in to the citation link and watch the video of Ms. O’Neal Duran if you like. I shall digress no further. I really do want to get to exploring that nagging question.

California Campaign Finance Regulations

We’ll get to the question in a moment. First, we are going to explore some key facts of reality and Campaign Finance Reform. Putting some context to the question, that is otherwise lacking in the mob mentality.

In California, each individual contributing to a political candidate is subject to a contribution limit. These limits are set forth by the CA Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) and codified into law. In the current election cycle, an individual or corporation can contribute at most $4200 to a candidate for State Senate or State Assembly.

When a politician is subject to recall, these contribution limits are removed, should the candidate set up a PAC to oppose the recall. Here is the key excerpt as shown on the CA FPPC website[2]:

Exceptions

Contribution limits do not apply to a committee established by a state officeholder who is the target of a recall to oppose the qualification of the recall measure, and if the recall petition qualifies, the recall election.

This assertion above is a summary of the CA State Code of Regulations, Title 2, Division 6, Chapter 5, § 18531.5[3]. Recall Elections, and is reflected in subparagraph § 18531.5.b.1, which reads:

(b) Application of Contribution and Voluntary Expenditure Limits to State Recalls.

(1) Target Officer. Pursuant to Government Code section 85315, the contribution limits of Chapter 5 of the Act do not apply to contributions accepted by an elected state officer who is the target of a recall into a separate recall committee established to oppose the qualification of the recall measure or the recall election. Pursuant to Government Code section 85315, the voluntary expenditure limits of the Act do not apply to expenditures made by an elected state officer who is the target of a recall to oppose the qualification of the recall measure or the recall election.

In essence, the BEST POSSIBLE THING FOR Senator Pan in his Machiavellian pursuit to become Mandator General[sic] is to be subjected to a recall BECAUSE he can legally receive more money from his benefactors than he could for his re-election efforts in a normal election. Merck and GSK can break past the $4200 limit and quite literally donate millions of dollars to this PAC. The committee to oppose the recall can spend that money on things that will not only help fend off the recall, but also assist Pan’s re-election efforts. For example, ads to boost his image, provax scare ads, more trolls, excuse me, Publicists and Public Relations Workers, to spread Pharma’s propaganda.

UPDATE from The Sacramento Bee on January 4th

The anti-recall campaign, on the other hand, pulled in tens of thousands of dollars to defend Pan. Groups representing physicians, real estate interests, educators and organized labor contributed around $125,000 to the campaign, which unlike conventional races does not impose contribution limits.

Yep, $125K for Senator Pan. Bupkis for our movement.

Link: http://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article52931130.html

pan-cha-ching

I’m sure Ogilvy Mather will gladly take all that money to add to Pharma’s current web of lies, deception and fraud. Interesting thing about this law, under § 18531.5.b.2, anyone who would run as a replacement candidate IS STILL SUBJECT to legal campaign limits.

(b) Application of Contribution and Voluntary Expenditure Limits to State Recalls.

(2) Replacement Candidates. The replacement candidates in a state recall election are seeking elective state office and therefore the contribution and voluntary expenditure limits of Chapter 5 of the Act apply to replacement candidates.

Recall Pan, Chapter 2

Is this knowledge a complete and perfect barrier to a successful recall? Not necessarily. A well-funded recall effort that can match the spending of Pan’s benefactors, and that is run by conscientious, experienced and humble people might actually stand a chance of success.

Nevertheless, our movement is not sufficiently funded. Absent that funding, the efforts to Recall Pan amount to nothing more than a campaign to enrich his election coffers by eliminating the campaign contribution limits set forth by state law.

Summing Up

Make no mistake, those people who supported Recall Chapter 1 or who are actively supporting Recall Episode 2, are either directly or unwittingly supporting Senator Pan’s re-election efforts. There is an old adage: Do not mistake for malice that which can be explained by ignorance or incompetence. I say: Don’t be naive about Pharma’s limitless cash-driven sphere of influence. Follow the money. It is quite possible that every recall effort in this fight is a Trojan Horse sent to us by Pharma, to drain our resources, time, personnel, and morale, while handing Pharma a free pass to purchase more politicians.

Citations

  1. Petition calling for investigation into the PanRecall Committee (FPPC ID #1377741)
    https://www.change.org/p/investigate-panrecall-committee
  2. CA FPPC State Contribution Limits and Voluntary Expenditure Ceilings
    http://www.fppc.ca.gov/learn/campaign-rules/state-contribution-limits.html
  3. CA State Code of Regulations, Title 2, Division 6, Chapter 5, § 18531.5[3]. Recall Elections
    https://govt.westlaw.com/calregs/Document/I81BD9560D49311DEBC02831C6D6C108E?viewType=FullText&originationContext=documenttoc&transitionType=CategoryPageItem&contextData=(sc.Default)

The Fallacy of using Snopes to validate the truth, Part I

Introduction

In this article, we will examine an article published on Snopes, regarding deaths associated with the Gardasil HPV Vaccine. The Snopes’ article contains several distortions and omissions. What is presented here will be verified as fact by citing reliable sources at the end of the article.

The Snopes Article we are examining can be found here: http://www.snopes.com/medical/drugs/gardasil.asp

Blowing smoke about the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS)

Snopes takes issue with the use of the VAERS Database to establish a count of deaths occurring after the administration of Gardasil. Of note in this article, Snopes attempts to imply that Vaccine Refusers are falsifying entries to VAERS in this quote:

(To illustrate this concept, we offer the following [admittedly far-fetched] scenario: A man who received a flu vaccination and then accidentally hit his hand with a hammer a few hours later might legitimately report that soon after he received the flu vaccine, his hand began to throb painfully. Although such a report would be literally true, it would not establish any causal connection between the flu vaccine and the adverse medical symptom of a throbbing, painful hand.)

This is to manipulate the mind of the viewer with the idea that there are excessive numbers of reports in VAERS. Of important note, VAERS itself claims that one of its flaws is underreporting. Snopes also skips over the fact that anyone filing a false report with VAERS is subject to a $250K fine plus prison. These and other typical Provax arguments against VAERS are fully debunked in another post (VAERS – A database full of lies?), so we’ll dispense with further examination of this straw man argument, and cut to the chase – shining light on the claims Snopes makes in support of Gardasil’s safety, what is wrong with their reasoning, and what key information is missing from their research.

Establishing a [flimsy] foundation of safety

Snopes cites 5 Gardasil Clinical trials as confirming the safety of the vaccine:

As the CDC stated in its 2009 article on “Reports of Health Concerns Following HPV Vaccination,” before the Gardasil HPV vaccine was licensed it was studied in five clinical trials involving over 21,000 girls and women of ages 9 through 26. Since that licensing the “CDC and FDA have been closely monitoring the safety of the HPV vaccine” and found that:

All serious reports for Gardasil have been carefully analyzed by medical experts. Experts have not found a common medical pattern to the reports of serious adverse events reported for Gardasil that would suggest that they were caused by the vaccine.

As of December 31, 2008, there have been 32 U.S. reports of death among females who have received the vaccine. There was no common pattern to the deaths that would suggest that they were caused by the vaccine.

 

The foundation is based on omission

According to Merck’s Gardasil Insert, the fact of the matter is, there were 7 clinical trials of Gardasil[1] (not 5) for studying safety, conducted by Merck (not the FDA) during the vaccine approval process. None of the safety trials were double-blind, the gold standard for scientific research. Additionally, 5 of those trials used a vaccine adjuvant as the control. Two other trials, one saline-controlled, and the other uncontrolled were also performed.

To truly isolate the safety of the vaccine adjuvant, the key point of controversy when it comes to vaccine safety, all tests should have been saline-controlled.

The 5 trials using Amorphous Aluminum Hydroxyphosphate Sulfate (a vaccine adjuvant) as the control essentially amount to comparing poison to poison, and concluding that since both the experiment and control groups achieved similar results, the product is therefore safe.

The published results of all 7 trials were lumped together in one report. The results of the saline-controlled trial, the one that is most likely to speak to the safety of the product, are obfuscated. Establishing why “scientists” might choose to combine their data this way is left as an exercise for the reader.

Further Omissions

It is a common practice for scientists to take shortcuts by relying on previous studies. In other words, they assume the results of a prior study are correct, and they can short-circuit their study process by not re-examining past experiments. This is the rationale behind the 5 adjuvant-controlled studies, the adjuvants are proven “safe” by prior studies.

One such study from 2007 is HUMAN HEALTH RISK ASSESSMENT FOR ALUMINIUM, ALUMINIUM OXIDE, AND ALUMINIUM HYDROXIDE[2] which concludes that these aluminum-based salts commonly used as vaccine adjuvants, are safe for human use.

The scientists involved in this study reach this conclusion despite their own acknowledgement of Scientific Data Gaps in their study, including one they cite as a “Major” Scientifice Data Gap:

At present, there is no long-term animal bioassay focusing on the neurotoxic effects of aluminium.

What this means, there have been no animal-based experiments to study the neurotoxic effects of aluminum. Human studies are considered to be unethical according to the Nuremberg Code, established shortly after the discovery of atrocities during World War II.

The scientists go on to rationalize their choice to ignore this Major Scientific Data Gap:

Although this represents a major scientific data gap, the Panel questioned whether the availability of such a study would greatly improve our ability to establish human exposure guidelines for aluminium, given the availability of direct epidemiological evidence in this regard.

-and-

The Panel also noted the lack of data on neurodevelopmental effects in animals, but was unclear on the need for additional data in this regard for risk assessment purposes.

In other words, they voted as a group to ignore this gap. Last time I checked, Science was not a democratic process.

Of course, while making that decision, they chose to make recommendations for others who might come after them, who would do such an animal study into the long term neurotoxic effects of aluminum salts:

If such a study were to be conducted for the purpose of informing human health risk assessment, careful consideration should be given to the neurological endpoints that would be of most relevance to humans, the most appropriate animal species and route of exposure, and the detailed experimental design, including the number of animals tested, and number and selection of doses.

Feel your mind looping around like a pretzel? Me too. We don’t need this data, but we thought long and hard about what we would do IF we were to seek that data.

In conclusion

Snopes employs logical fallacies and omission of fact to arrive at their conclusions of whether an idea is true or false.

Citations

  1. Merck Gardasil Product Insert (6.1 / Page 4)
    http://www.merck.com/product/usa/pi_circulars/g/gardasil/gardasil_pi.pdf
  2. HUMAN HEALTH RISK ASSESSMENT FOR ALUMINIUM, ALUMINIUM OXIDE, AND ALUMINIUM HYDROXIDE  (Scroll to Scientific Data Gaps)
    National Institutes of Health, US National Library of Medicine
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2782734/

VAERS – A database full of lies?

Introduction

In this article we will examine the veracity of one of the main criticisms leveled against the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), a database run by the United States Department of Health and Human Services that reports vaccine reactions ranging from rashes to death. VAERS is commonly criticized by AstroTurf Media Professionals as exaggerating the actual injury figures.

Let’s have a look at one of the most commonly-heard criticisms about VAERS:

VAERS is a website that allows just anybody to report a vaccine injury, and anti-vaxxers have filled it with false data!”

The VAERS Reporting System

VAERS is a passive reporting system. That means it accepts reports from anyone who might happen to be aware of VAERS, who then takes the time to report a vaccine adverse reaction. The person making the report might be a health care professional or an individual. This process is in stark contrast to an active surveillance system, where doctors are required to report injuries. An example of an active surveillance system is when the CDC tracks outbreaks of communicable diseases, where all healthcare practitioners and first responders are required by law to report anyone showing symptoms. Healthcare providers are not mandated by law to report vaccine injuries, despite the fact that they often result in death and long-term disability.

Before Reporting an adverse event to VAERSVAERS Reporting Process

The first step in reporting an event to VAERS is to contact your physician. Though “just anybody” can file a report, everyone is required to contact their healthcare provider first. That presents a bit of an obstacle.

The reason one must contact their health care provider is explained in the VAERS FAQ: [1]

The CDC and FDA require additional information on selected VAERS reports for the public health purpose of helping to ensure the safety of U.S.-licensed vaccines. You or your health care provider may be contacted for follow-up information by VAERS staff after your report is received. These selected reports are followed up by a team of health care professionals to obtain additional information (such as medical records and autopsy reports) to provide as complete a picture of the case as possible. All records sent to VAERS are kept confidential as required by law. The patient’s consent is not required to release the medical records to VAERS.

In other words, if you were to file a false report, there is a chance you will be found out. Someone on the other end is actually watching.

Actually filing the report with VAERS

After contacting your healthcare provider, you can then access the online form [2] to file the report. Right there, above the fold and in bold face type we can see this warning:

VAERS Warning

18 U.S. Code § 1001 [3] penalizes any person convicted of filing a false report to VAERS with a fine and/or prison sentence. The sentence can be up to 5 years, and the fine up to $250,000 [4].

It would appear the VAERS database is robustly defended against false reports.

Potency of VAERS Data

Though the VAERS Database bears the warning that it may contain coincidental events as well as those caused by vaccines, the main flaw the government points out with regard to VAERS is that the data is underreported, and goes on to say VAERS receives reports for only a small fraction of actual adverse events.

“Underreporting” is one of the main limitations of passive surveillance systems, including VAERS. The term underreporting refers to the fact that VAERS receives reports for only a small fraction of actual adverse events. [5]

Injury Rates

The United States Health Resources and Services Administration freely discloses that 4,150 cases in the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program have been awarded damages for vaccine injuries. [6] The U.S. Census office projects the U.S. Population to be 322 million in the United States as of July 2015. [7] Therefore, the rate of vaccine injury compensation in the United States, which by no means includes all of the vaccine injuries, is 1 in 78,400 people. [8]

In conclusion

The likelihood of false reports to VAERS is minimized by both serious penalties under law for filing false reports, and the potential for review by the Department of Health and Human Services.

The likelihood that vaccine injuries may be many times more common than reported to VAERS is extremely high, and openly acknowledged by the US Department of Health and Human Services.

The actual number of people who have been injured by vaccines to the extent that they might candidates for compensation is likely higher than the rate of 1 in 78,400 for the same reasons that these cases are underreported to the VAERS database.  In addition, some people who believe they have been injured may choose not to pursue litigation which is expensive and uncertain in its outcome.

Citations

  1. VAERS Frequently Asked Questions
    https://vaers.hhs.gov/about/faqs#reports_followed_up
  2. VAERS Report Filing options
    https://vaers.hhs.gov/esub/index
  3. Cornell University listing of 18 U.S. Code § 1001
    https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/1001
  4. Cornell University list of 18 U.S. Code § 3571 – Sentence of Fine
    https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/3571
  5. VAERS Data Page
    https://vaers.hhs.gov/data/index
  6. US Health Resources and Services Administration Report on Vaccine Injury Compensation
    http://www.hrsa.gov/vaccinecompensation/statisticsreport.pdf
  7. US Census Bureau population clock
    http://www.census.gov/popclock/
  8. Arithmetic

“There are no fetal cells in vaccines” – debunked

Introduction

There are no fetal cells in vaccines

How often have we heard that line from the mouths of vaccine advocates? California’s Senator Pan entered this line into his testimony before the California Senate Health Committee. Activists within the Healthcare Civil Rights Movement hear this almost every day in response to their efforts to spread truth about vaccines. This article seeks to examine the underlying truth and omission of truth in that statement.

Overview

As you will learn by the end of this article, that statement is at best a half-truth, and a flimsy one at that. We will examine two different vaccines, Merck’s MMR II (mumps, measles and rubella), and Merck’s Varivax (varicella aka chicken pox). According to the package insert as presented on Merck’s website, both of these vaccines contain what are known as “human diploid cells”. The MMR II[1] uses the WI-38 human diploid cell line, while Varivax[2] uses both WI-38 and MRC-5 cell lines.

Why are human cells in vaccines?

Any vaccine contains a payload designed to train your immune system. The payload is either a live virus, or an attenuated live virus. The payload is there to give the recipient’s immune system something to attack. When the recipient’s immune system attacks the virus, it develops a certain pattern of antibodies so that it will have an immune response on file that kills the virus, should that person become infected by that virus in the future. Human Diploid cells were found by scientists to be an effective means of culturing (growing and multiplying) the virus, which is why they are used.

Origin of Human Cell Lines

The human cell lines used in the two vaccines explored in this article are known as WI-38 and MRC-5. The cells originally used to create the WI-38 cell line were taken from the lungs of a 3-month old female fetus some time during the 1960’s.[3] This line was developed by Leonard Hayflick, at The Wistar Institute for Anatomy and Biology in Philadelphia. His discovery of the WI-38 line came after similar attempts with culturing tissue from at least 25 fetuses[4] before arriving at the WI-38 viable cell line. The origin is no secret, as depicted on the website of the American Type Culture Collection, a biorepository/cell culturing lab that sells cell lines to scientists and industry: http://www.atcc.org/products/all/CCL-75.aspx#characteristics Similarly, the cells originally used to create the MRC-5 cell line were taken from the lungs of a 14 week old male fetus, as verified on the website of the Coriell Institute, another biorepository, that offers these cell lines for sale to scientists and industry.  https://catalog.coriell.org/0/Sections/Search/Sample_Detail.aspx?Ref=AG05965-D Another perhaps interesting point with respect to the MRC-5 line, the fetus was aborted because the mother was under psychiatric care.

Application of Human Fetal Cell Lines

To ensure that vaccines are manufactured with some level of consistency, the same human diploid cells must be used in each batch. Since the lungs of a 3 month old fetus are still very small, it is easy to see they would run out eventually. This is where the biorepositories come in. They took those original cells and multiplied them to create a supply for use in science.

Truth or Deception – you decide

The cells actually used by Merck in the manufacture of the vaccine are highly unlikely, perhaps impossible to be the actual cells taken from the aborted fetuses. This is the half-truth here. But this half truth disregards the fact that the original cell cultures were harvested from a human fetus. It also is blind to the obvious fact that the cells used in manufacture would simply not exist, if not for the aborted fetuses that was their source.

Challenges of Conscience

It is of course up to each individual in a free society to determine if the source of these cell lines in vaccines is something they can accept as a matter of conscience. If someone objects to the use of these cell lines in vaccines on the basis of religious belief, they are not crazy because these cell lines would not exist if an abortion had not occurred. Another aspect of conscience here, any human cell line can only withstand 50 +/-10 divisions before the cells will cease to divide.[5] What this means is that there is a finite supply of cells that can be produced under each human diploid cell line. When the WI-38 line is expended, the MMR II, Varivax and any other vaccine relying on that line will have to be reformulated, using a new human fetal cell sample. There is no stretch of imagination in concluding numerous fetuses will need to be examined to find the lung cells that have the desired characteristics, as Hayflick had to do in the 1960’s.

Vatican Statement

Another half-truth about vaccines containing human cells, is that the Catholic Church is not against vaccines. As one of the largest providers of health care on the planet, The Catholic Church administers human cell-containing vaccines on a routine basis. Nevertheless, The Pontifical Academy for Life issued a paper in 2006[6] which closes out by summarizing a few points:

there is a grave responsibility to use alternative vaccines and to make a conscientious objection with regard to those which have moral problems;

as regards the vaccines without an alternative, the need to contest so that others may be prepared must be reaffirmed, as should be the lawfulness of using the former in the meantime insomuch as is necessary in order to avoid a serious risk not only for one’s own children but also, and perhaps more specifically, for the health conditions of the population as a whole – especially for pregnant women;

the lawfulness of the use of these vaccines should not be misinterpreted as a declaration of the lawfulness of their production, marketing and use, but is to be understood as being a passive material cooperation and, in its mildest and remotest sense, also active, morally justified as an extrema ratio due to the necessity to provide for the good of one’s children and of the people who come in contact with the children (pregnant women);

such cooperation occurs in a context of moral coercion of the conscience of parents, who are forced to choose to act against their conscience or otherwise, to put the health of their children and of the population as a whole at risk. This is an unjust alternative choice, which must be eliminated as soon as possible.

Citations

1. Merck MMR II Package Insert (page 1)
http://www.merck.com/product/usa/pi_circulars/m/mmr_ii/mmr_ii_pi.pdf

2. Merck Varivax Package Insert (page 6)
http://www.merck.com/product/usa/pi_circulars/v/varivax/varivax_pi.pdf

3. “The Serial Cultivation of Human Diploid Cell Strains”, 1961 Hayflick, Moorhead
http://www.researchgate.net/publication/222440006_The_serial_cultivation_of_human_diploid_cell_strains._Exp._Cell_Res._25_585-621

4. “Medical research: Cell division”, 2013 Wadman, Nature, Volume 498 Issue 7455.
http://www.nature.com/news/medical-research-cell-division-1.13273

5. “The Limited in vitro Lifetime of Human Diploid Cell Straings”, 1964 Hayflick
http://www.researchgate.net/publication/9269319_The_Limited_in_Vitro_Lifetime_of_Human_Diploid_Cell_Strains

6. “Moral reflections on vaccines prepared from cells derived from aborted human fetuses”, 2006
http://www.immunize.org/concerns/vaticandocument.htm
also available from the National Catholic Bioethics Center
http://www.ncbcenter.org/document.doc?id=7