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Measles Outbreak Casts Spotlight on Anti-Vaxxers


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#821 LFC

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 01:58 PM

Finally some sanity from social media companies on anti-vax propaganda.

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Facebook is changing how users see vaccine content — part of an ongoing effort by social platforms to correct, block, and minimize vaccine misinformation amid a record measles outbreak.

On Wednesday, the social media giant, which owns Instagram, announced a new vaccine information pop-up. Whenever users happen upon a page or profile with vaccine-related content, they’re shown a window that connects them to credible vaccine data (the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for US-based users and the World Health Organization for international users).

The move follows Facebook’s previous actions to limit anti-vaccine hoaxes on its network, and blocking of anti-vaccine hashtags, such as #VaccinesCauseAutism and #VaccinesArePoison, on Instagram.

Even Pinterest, typically a place for home and wedding inspiration, is now trying to make vaccine misinformation less prominent. Last year, the platform barred searches for any vaccine content, recognizing that its vast user base of moms was accessing misinformation on the platform. Then in August, Pinterest began displaying only results from credible public health organizations, including WHO and CDC.

YouTube has also announced it’s no longer allowing users to monetize anti-vaccine videos with ads, in the hopes that it will disincentivize the people who create them.

These changes are encouraging for one reason: Misinformation about vaccines can be dangerous. And a crackdown by some of the world’s tech giants, which all have millions of users, might mean fewer people are exposed to anti-vax information, and maybe fewer parents will decide to shirk lifesaving shots for their kids.

But it’s probably unrealistic to expect that Facebook or Pinterest will eliminate anti-vaccine sentiment, and there are reasons to be skeptical of their approaches. While it’s popular to blame YouTube and its ilk for every social evil, it’s not actually clear that these platforms are emboldening vaccine denialism in a significant way. And there are better proven ways to boost immunization rates — but they involve more systemic fixes than just stamping out erroneous pins and Facebook posts. Here’s why.


Update: The CDC puts the number of measles cases in the U.S. at 1,234 now.
" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#822 AnBr

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 05:28 PM

Now if they would only do that for other leading misinformation, like climate change, etc.
“Trump’s a stupid man’s idea of a smart person, a poor man’s idea of a rich person & a weak man’s idea of a strong man.”

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“One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we've been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It's simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.”

— Carl Sagan


Pray for Trump: Psalm 109:8

"Science is more than a body of knowledge; it is a way of thinking. I have a foreboding of an America in my children's or grandchildren's time - when the United States is a service and information economy; when nearly all the key manufacturing industries have slipped away to other countries; when awesome technological powers arc in the hands of a very few, and no one representing the public interest can even grasp the issues; when the people have lost the ability to set their own agendas or knowledgeably question those in authority; when, clutching our crystals and nervously consulting our horoscopes, our critical faculties in decline, unable to distinguish between what feels good and what's true, we slide, almost without noticing, back into superstition and darkness.

— Carl Sagan
The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark
1995


“As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”

— H.L. Mencken
On Politics: A Carnival of Buncombe


“The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.”

— Franklin Delano Roosevelt
Second inaugural address January, 1937

#823 golden_valley

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Posted 10 September 2019 - 02:19 PM

Anti vaxxers close down part of the CA legislature in protesting two bills that define how medical exemptions are to be given. Apparently medical exemptions were for sale by some doctors. The bills were authored by a senator who is also a pediatrician and who authored a bill banning personal belief as reason for exemption.

#824 LFC

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Posted 19 September 2019 - 11:27 AM

We might finally be at the end of the measles outbreak ... for now.

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For the first time since early January, no new measles cases were reported in the United States last week, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Health officials continue to monitor ongoing outbreaks in two New York counties.

The number of measles cases in the United remained at 1,241 for the year as of last Thursday.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#825 LFC

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 11:14 AM

Posted Image
" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#826 LFC

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 11:19 AM

The U.S. retained its measles elimination status ... barely.

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Just in the nick of time, a nearly yearlong measles outbreak that threatened to strip the United States of a major public health achievement decades in the making has ended. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced on October 4 that the United States has maintained its measles elimination status, first gained in 2000.

“We are very pleased that the measles outbreak has ended in New York and that measles is still considered eliminated in the United States,” said U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar in a statement. “But this past year’s outbreak was an alarming reminder about the dangers of vaccine hesitancy and misinformation.”

Had the New York state outbreak not been resolved by October 2, the United States would have lost its status as a country that has eliminated measles, primarily putting those not vaccinated at risk from homegrown measles cases. It would have also raised concerns for other countries working to eliminate measles, says Walter Orenstein, a vaccinologist at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta. “If we can’t do it, how can they?” Measles this year has already reestablished itself in several countries where it had previously been eliminated, including the United Kingdom.

If there are no endemic cases for at least a year, measles is considered eliminated. That means the virus is not continually spreading within an area.


Unvaccinated adults played a big role in spreading measles this year even though children bore the brunt of it. Nice of these folks to bring the disease into an area and then share it around to those least prepared to fight it.

Quote

Unvaccinated adults had a “significant” impact on the early days of the New York State measles outbreak, with 51% of cases during the first month being attributable to them, according to data presented at IDWeek.

Two measles outbreaks in New York that sickened almost 1,000 people — one in New York City, the other in Rockland County — have both been declared over. Debra Blog, MD, MPH, director of the division of epidemiology at the New York State Department of Health, and colleagues analyzed data on measles cases occurring outside of New York City from October 2018 to September 2019.

“We wanted to look at the role that adults played in the outbreak,” Blog told Infectious Disease News. “There was significant transmission to others for these cases. Most adults — 82% — who became ill with measles were unvaccinated or had unknown vaccination status.”

Blog summarized the study findings, noting that although 80% of cases occurred in children, adults did play a significant role in transmission, especially early in the outbreak.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#827 AnBr

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Posted 02 November 2019 - 05:49 PM

Measles Makes Your Immune System’s Memory Forget Defenses Against Other Illnesses

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New research shows the virus can have devastating effects on the immune system that persist much longer than the illness itself.

Measles is far more dangerous than most people realize, new research shows.

The disease itself can cause a severe and sometimes deadly illness, but two new studies published on Thursday found that even when patients recover, the virus can inflict lasting harm on their immune systems.

The weakened immunity leaves a child vulnerable for several years to other dangerous infections like flu and pneumonia. The damage occurs because the virus kills cells that make antibodies, which are crucial to fighting off infections.

Scientists call the effect “immune amnesia.” During childhood, as colds, flu, stomach bugs and other illnesses come and go, the immune system forms something akin to a memory that it uses to attack those germs if they try to invade again. The measles virus erases that memory, leaving the patient prone to catching the diseases all over again.

“Trump’s a stupid man’s idea of a smart person, a poor man’s idea of a rich person & a weak man’s idea of a strong man.”

— Fran Lebowitz


“One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we've been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It's simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.”

— Carl Sagan


Pray for Trump: Psalm 109:8

"Science is more than a body of knowledge; it is a way of thinking. I have a foreboding of an America in my children's or grandchildren's time - when the United States is a service and information economy; when nearly all the key manufacturing industries have slipped away to other countries; when awesome technological powers arc in the hands of a very few, and no one representing the public interest can even grasp the issues; when the people have lost the ability to set their own agendas or knowledgeably question those in authority; when, clutching our crystals and nervously consulting our horoscopes, our critical faculties in decline, unable to distinguish between what feels good and what's true, we slide, almost without noticing, back into superstition and darkness.

— Carl Sagan
The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark
1995


“As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”

— H.L. Mencken
On Politics: A Carnival of Buncombe


“The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.”

— Franklin Delano Roosevelt
Second inaugural address January, 1937

#828 D. C. Sessions

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Posted 03 November 2019 - 07:38 AM

This was actually discovered back in the 60s, although we're learning more about it now as we figure out more about how the immune system works (it's messy.)

Back then, when the measles vaccine was introduced there was a drop in not only measles but a whole host of other diseases, and this was the hypothesis of how that happened.

Me, I hope we figure out how measles does it and weaponize it against autoimmune diseases.
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#829 LFC

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Posted 18 November 2019 - 06:28 PM

Robert F. Kennedy Jr, Merchant of Death.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is the single leading source of anti-vax ads on Facebook

Quote

Just two organizations were responsible for the majority of anti-vaccine advertisements on Facebook before the social media giant restricted such content in March of this year, according to a November 13 study in the journal Vaccine.

Of 145 anti-vaccine Facebook advertisements that ran between May 31, 2017 and February 22, 2019, the World Mercury Project and a group called Stop Mandatory Vaccination together ran 54% of them.

The World Mercury Project, which ran the most ads of any single source, is an organization closely aligned with the anti-vaccine group Children's Health Defense. Both are spearheaded by Robert F. Kennedy Jr., an environmental lawyer turned prolific peddler of dangerous anti-vaccine misinformation. He and his organizations promote conspiracy theories about vaccine safety, including the roundly debunked claim that safe, life-saving immunizations are linked to autism. More recently, Kennedy has become a prominent opponent of laws aimed at increasing vaccination rates among school children.

Stop Mandatory Vaccination is a for-profit venture run by a man named Larry Cook. He, too, trumpets vaccine misinformation and fear-mongers. On Facebook and other platforms, Cook runs advertisements and campaigns making dubious links between the vaccines and tragic baby deaths. One such ad was banned by the UK's Advertising Standards Authority last year. The regulator determined the ad to be "misleading," "unsubstantiated," and "likely to cause undue distress." In other instances, he has claimed that the pro-vaccine medical community is covering up the "slaughter" of children.

Cook has raised tens of thousands of dollars via crowd funding. (He was banned earlier this year from GoFundMe). The money goes not only to Cook's disturbing anti-vaccine misinformation campaigns but also to his own pockets. In an interview with The Daily Beast in February, Cook declined to disclose how much of the donations he receives go to himself and how much go to his anti-vaccine activities. He told the outlet: "I'm not a non-profit. I don't need to report any income—we are in a capitalist society and anyone can raise and spend how we want."

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#830 AnBr

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Posted 18 November 2019 - 07:17 PM

This has made me lose all respect for him.
“Trump’s a stupid man’s idea of a smart person, a poor man’s idea of a rich person & a weak man’s idea of a strong man.”

— Fran Lebowitz


“One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we've been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It's simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.”

— Carl Sagan


Pray for Trump: Psalm 109:8

"Science is more than a body of knowledge; it is a way of thinking. I have a foreboding of an America in my children's or grandchildren's time - when the United States is a service and information economy; when nearly all the key manufacturing industries have slipped away to other countries; when awesome technological powers arc in the hands of a very few, and no one representing the public interest can even grasp the issues; when the people have lost the ability to set their own agendas or knowledgeably question those in authority; when, clutching our crystals and nervously consulting our horoscopes, our critical faculties in decline, unable to distinguish between what feels good and what's true, we slide, almost without noticing, back into superstition and darkness.

— Carl Sagan
The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark
1995


“As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”

— H.L. Mencken
On Politics: A Carnival of Buncombe


“The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.”

— Franklin Delano Roosevelt
Second inaugural address January, 1937

#831 golden_valley

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Posted 04 December 2019 - 02:32 PM

Samoa is dealing with a measles outbreak in a time honored way but with a twist. Houses that contain un-vaccinated people are to be marked with red flags so that public health workers know who needs to be vaccinated.

Quote

Officials told the public Tuesday to hang red flags or cloth outside houses where people have not been vaccinated, to help teams embarking on a massive door-to-door campaign giving free booster shots. The government plans to canvas the entire country of 200,000 over two days later this week while shutting down both the “public and private sectors” — the latest urgent measure in a health crisis that’s hit the South Pacific nation’s children hardest.


#832 LFC

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Posted 04 December 2019 - 04:37 PM

View Postgolden_valley, on 04 December 2019 - 02:32 PM, said:

Samoa is dealing with a measles outbreak in a time honored way but with a twist. Houses that contain un-vaccinated people are to be marked with red flags so that public health workers know who needs to be vaccinated.

A probable major trigger of low vaccination rates was mentioned in the WaPo piece but it this article explains what happened in detail.

Quote

The government of Samoa will shut down for two days this week while officials try to curb a deadly measles outbreak that has sickened 3,728 and killed 53—48 of whom were children ages 0 to 4 years old.

The Pacific island nation of around 200,000 first declared an outbreak of measles on October 16. The highly contagious viral infection spread rapidly, and officials declared a state of emergency by mid-November. The outbreak has continued to flare, however. On Sunday, the government reported that there had been 198 new measles cases in the last 24 hours alone.

In response, officials there have closed schools, barred children from public gatherings, and begun an intensive vaccination campaign. Since November, the government has reported vaccinating over 58,000 people.

But officials have their work cut out for them. The World Health Organization and UNICEF estimated that Samoa’s measles vaccination rate for infants was just 31% in 2018. That’s down from about 60% to 70% in earlier years and a high of 90% in 2013.

The drop may be partly explained by the tragic deaths of two infants in July 2018, according to the WHO. The infants died on the same day at the same hospital, shortly after they had each received what was supposed to be an MMR vaccine (which protects against measles, mumps, and rubella).

While some quickly blamed the vaccine itself, officials later determined that two nurses had improperly prepared the immunizations. Investigators found that they had mixed in a lethal dose of muscle relaxant, and one of the nurses tried to cover up the error by taking the empty bottle of the muscle relaxant home after retrieving it from the garbage. The two faced charges of manslaughter and were both sentenced to five years in prison in August of this year.


And once again f***ing Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. was up to his filthy, lying neck in it, peddling garbage like crazy over the two deaths. He used his wealth and fame to spread lies, plain and simple. The fact that the lies were never corrected shows how knowingly complicit he is. The blood of these 48 dead children is now on his hands as well as the hands of all the other anti-vaxxers who peddled this bullshit.

Quote

Still, news of the heartbreaking deaths shook the island nation’s confidence in the healthcare system. And anti-vaccination groups pounced on the circumstances. Most notably, the deaths were picked up by the Children’s Health Defense, run by the prominent anti-vaccine advocate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. As The Washington Post noted, Kennedy’s organization spent months highlighting the deaths on Facebook while questioning the safety of the MMR vaccines. But the organization did not correct the posts or update its audience with information regarding the nurses’ error and convictions.

Kennedy visited Samoa in June, appearing alongside local anti-vaccine advocates and even a staff member of the US embassy. In November, Kennedy’s organization sent a letter to the Samoan prime minister, encouraging officials to question the MMR vaccine. Kennedy peddles the false and dangerous claim that vaccines are linked to autism, despite the fact that numerous scientific studies have robustly debunked the baseless claim.

On Sunday, Samoan Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi encouraged residents to fight back against misinformation. “Let us work together to encourage and convince those that do not believe that vaccinations are the only answer to the epidemic,” he said.


It may be in poor taste but I think the best thing Mr. Kennedy can do for the safety of children of the world is to go join his father. We don't need another effective mass murderer of children on our planet. It's dangerous enough for them as it is.
" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer





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