Welcome to Echochamber Friday, which is when we decide to read articles we’d normally skip over so we don’t become frogs in a well. For instance, I am not on Facebook, so I was unaware until just now the Andrew Wakefield minions are at it again.
by O Society March 8, 2019
If you are not aware how all of this epic saga started, X-Dr. Wakefield made up data on a dozen children. Wakefield received money from a pharmaceutical company to discredit a rival company’s MMR vaccine to publish these falsified data in the Lancet.
The Lancet published these data unaware of the scam. Once the fraud was discovered, the Lancet retracted his story completely, which is why it is rather difficult to find Wakefield’s original hoax published on line any longer.
Long story short, Wakefield lost his licence to practice medicine in the UK, so he fled to the United States, where he set up his fly-by-night campaign in Texas, because ostensibly, Texas has the highest concentration of rubes in the population.
Scene at the Gulf of Mexico
See Jade Helm, Alex Jones, Joel Osteen, our current caravan of Muslims invading through the border “emergency,” etc. The list of successful frauds and hoaxes to succeed in the credulous Texas environment is endless.
In any case, I’ve heard -and you’ve heard – the Wakefield fraud story (plus the Jenny McCarthy sequel it spawned) at length many times. So it now bores me to tears. If by some chance you haven’t heard, it’s recounted here in great detail. Good luck!
Whatever the third act is on Facebook these days, I’m not really interested in hearing about the details of the latest stop the madness campaign. So instead, we’ll address the issue concisely once here on Echochamber Friday…
As with these manufactured dramas in general – the Earth is Flat, Young Earth Creationism, the Moon Landing was Faked, Donald Trump is Qualified to be President – the more energy we give the kooks, the more attention we pay to refuting the lies, the bigger a role we play in producing the drama, the worse it all gets.
So ignore it. Do not engage. Do not feed the trolls. Any attention or debate you give these folks only makes them feel special, feeding the collective narcissism we culture on line in the Facebook Petri dish.
And yes, I am an expert in these matters. So don’t troll me. It’s a waste of your time and mine. I worked for two years in an immunology laboratory on a military grant in conjunction with a US Army base. We worked on developing a vaccine to anthrax, which is a sheep disease people were stuffing in envelopes and mailing to their favorite politicians at the time. You can read more about this project here.
So don’t bother to give me a “your all shills for Big Pharma” smearing of bullshit. I am neither rich nor famous from working on vaccines to help prevent people – mostly soldiers and children – from getting sick and dying.
Yes, they do. Ask Olivia.
We’ve all spent far too much time, energy, and money cleaning up this hellified mess Andrew Wakefield and Jenny McCarthy shat upon the lives of people with autism, in return for fame, cash, and prizes.
So here’s their latest droppings in USA Today:
Teen who vaccinated himself says anti-vaxx Mom gets misinformation from Facebook
A teenager who made headlines after defying his anti-vaxx mother testified in front of Congress on Tuesday, saying his mother’s misinformation stemmed from social media.
Ethan Lindenberger, a teenager from Norwalk, Ohio traveled to Washington, DC to speak at a health, education, labor and pension committee hearing Tuesday on a panel alongside health experts including John Wiesman, Washington state’s secretary of health.
Ethan says as he approached high school and questioned why he wasn’t vaccinated, his mother often met him with misinformation she found online and in social media groups, never trust health officials. Ethan recalls showing his mother articles from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and her replying with denial.
“That’s what they want you to think,” she would tell him, Lindenberger said Tuesday.
In a question-and-answer portion of the hearing, Lindenberger names Facebook as one of the sites his mother uses often to wrongly suggest vaccines could cause harm. He also said she posts videos with fake news on the social media site.
He says it’s with “respect and love” he disagrees with his mother. Learning to research and debate in high school, Lindenberger, 18, says he learned “there always seems to be two sides to a discussion. This is not true for the vaccine debate.”
This isn’t the first time Facebook is accused of being a platform for fake health news. Responding to backlash last month, Facebook says it has “taken steps” to reduce misinformation around anti-vaxx posts.
The committee hearing comes as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention monitors six measles outbreaks across the nation, including in Clark County, Washington where 70 confirmed cases are reported.
Lindenberger reached out to Reddit users a few months ago to ask whether he could be vaccinated as an adult.
Ethan Lindenberger tells the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education Labor and Pensions “misinformation is so dangerous” when it comes to vaccines. USA TODAY
After his thread went viral, he told “Good Morning America” he never received vaccines for hepatitis, polio, measles, mumps, rubella, or chickenpox.
In December of last year, he caught up on his missed immunizations.
People choosing not to vaccinate are become a global health threat in 2019, the World Health Organization reports. The CDC recognizes the number of children who aren’t being vaccinated by 24 months of age gradually increases.
This week, yet another study shows the measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine (MMR) does not increase the risk of autism, nor does it “trigger autism” in children who are at risk. This research adds to mountains of already publicly available studies which say the same thing.