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Another swing for the fences and a miss by the anti-vaccine movement : Respectful Insolence

Two of the many good articles online today are regarding a "study" claiming that legal settlements prove an autism-vaccine link. Of course, having been involved in court cases and settlements in business, I can attest that the law has nothing to do with facts -- and often you settle because that's cheaper than paying lawyers. Settlements are not admissions of anything, though I admit I was tired of lawyers on those occasions when I had to deal them.

Another swing for the fences and a miss by the anti-vaccine movement : Respectful Insolence
Now that the report, written by anti-vaccine stalwarts Mary Holland, Louis Conte, anti-vaccine lawyer Robert Krakow, and Lisa Colin and entitled Unanswered Questions from the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program: A Review of Compensated Cases of Vaccine-Induced Brain Injury, has been published, I sort of wish I hadn't promised to blog about it, because now that I've actually read the damned thing I can't believe it. It's just that bad.
Yes, it is that bad. This "study" is nothing more than self-promotion by the lawyers involved.

From Medscape:

Readers are referred to a chapter in Holland's 2011 book that Wakefield coauthored on scientific studies that "support a possible link between vaccines and autism."

Asked about the reference to Wakefield possibly tainting the PELR article, Holland replied, "The story on Andrew Wakefield is far from over."

In a chapter that she herself wrote in her 2011 book, Holland chronicled the Wakefield affair and concluded that he was unfairly punished "for his temerity to caution the public about vaccine risks and to urge them to use their own judgment." Wakefield, she wrote, has joined an honorable tradition of dissidents like Galileo and Nelson Mandela, and the world will eventually recognize that he stood up "for the practice of medicine and the pursuit of science."

Dr. Offit agreed that both Wakefield and Galileo were both rebels who went against the grain.

"The critical difference," he said, "was that Galileo was right."
Wow, comparing Andrew Wakefield to Nelson Mandela? You have got to be kidding me. That's beyond absurd.


  1. I have nothing in this "fight". Too busy.

  2. Truly, some people would rather wipe out 100 years of scientific progress than admit that they were wrong. I was just cautioned by my doc that measles-- measles!-- has been making a huge comeback here in parts of Philly, a fact that can only be attributed to a decline in vaccinations. These people need to let it go, if only for the epidemiological reasons. (That's leaving out the myriad philosophical ones.) Thanks for posting.


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