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201  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Peer Review and the Scientific Process on: February 11, 2015, 09:05:53 PM
Since I know how long I'd end up spending if I decided to respond to even the majority of it, I'll attempt to control myself and focus on just a couple posts.

Same. I'll just hit a few points.

to play devil's advocate.

It wouldn't be much fun if I didn't. Wink

I like the cut of your strawman's jib! Good thing he's no true Scotsman or else your your ad hominem left hook might not have landed.

The Japanese Encephalitis vaccine is specifically recommended only for people traveling to certain areas in Asia, and, even then, only if they are going to be staying for a long period of time. The word for a doctor who recommended it as part of the standard course of vaccination isn't religious. It's quack.

Oh! Somebody read that! Nice! I was waiting for someone to call me on it. Wink

The examples I picked there were quite deliberate. It's utterly insane for someone living in rural Canada to get a Japanese encephalitis shot.

Because it's not needed. And there are no strong arguments for it.

But what about vaccines for diseases that are sexually transmitted or transmitted through sharing needles?

Are infants at risk?

I don't know too many junkie whore infants. Wink

Hepatitis vaccine given at birth.

I've already mentioned cervical cancer vaccines for boys.

Infants, small children, and the elderly are typically listed as "high risk" candidates for disease, etc. Why would anyone vaccinate an infant for a disease that they would only receive if they were raped or their junkie, infected parents stuck them with dirty needles?

No - it's not a strawman at all. It's to illustrate that some vaccine schedules are overly aggressive and include unnecessary vaccines.

Numbers derived from a false premise don't lie. In fact, they don't tell us anything at all. Used skillfully, though, they can lay the foundation for an effective appeal to consequences.

My point there was to illustrate that death isn't the only possible consequence. I'm not sure what you're driving at. If anything, this is a good argument for vaccination.

Nobody is more sceptical than me about pharmaceutical industry research. I'm familiar with the sort of nonsense they use to prop up their patent-based business model. Mike Masnick has written about them at Techdirt quite a bit over the years, and I wouldn't want to use the language that comes to mind when I think about it.

Mike is definitely one of my favourite bloggers out there.

If only we had someone else who aggregated data from more reliable sources, perhaps even directly from medical professionals, and provided that data to the public. We could call it the Centers for Disease Control. CDC has a nice ring to it, don't you think? They could even put up a website dedicated to it.

I'm well aware of the VAERS database. I didn't want to bring it up because it all too quickly degenerates into a blithering mass of profanity in just about every discussion that it is in. I'm trying pretty hard to skip those toxic elements of the debate.


Honestly, your appeals to emotion aren't really strong enough to warrant that level of mental gymnastics. The Russian judge gives this one a 2.

Doesn't matter. That was a throwaway. (Also, please notice that I have omitted a lot about the history of the courts and legislation there.)



Ironically, your anecdotal evidence matches the actual science.


Regarding that whole section - good write up.

I'll throw in that there are similarities in other areas as well, e.g. measles comes in a few flavours (apart from "German measles, etc.).

Quote
Oh, I just remembered a bit more insanity... This is fun~! Grin

That's because it's so easy. You're cherry picking facts, avoiding any semblance of context, proclaiming your own facts without even the pretense of evidence, and stringing it all together with a framework of logical fallacies. That's why they call it pseudo science.

Really?

You're cherry picking facts,

See below. Wink

avoiding any semblance of context,

I gave the context. Varivax and chickenpox. Although, I did do that in my next post. You had the context.

proclaiming your own facts without even the pretense of evidence,

Seriously? Like, really?

I presented information from the MANUFACTURER.

and stringing it all together with a framework of logical fallacies.

Pure nonsense.

ARGUMENT 1

Premises:
a) Children that are at a higher risk of transmitting a disease should be excluded from schools.
b) Unvaccinated childred are "higher risk".

Conclusion:
c) Unvaccinated children should be excluded from schools.

ARGUMENT 2

Premises:
a) Children that are at a higher risk of transmitting a disease should be excluded from schools.
d) Children that receive the Varivax chickenpox vaccine are "higher risk" for a period of time. (Information given by the manufacturer.)

Conclusion:
e) Children that receive the Varivax chickenpox vaccine should be excluded from schools for a period of time.

You have some explaining to do for accusing me of "stringing it all together with a framework of logical fallacies". From what I can see there, it's a pretty simple syllogism.

While I didn't draw it out as clearly before, I didn't figure that I really needed to outline the logic for such a simple syllogism.

What I illustrated there is that where argument 1 is acceptable to some people, argument 2 isn't, even though they are THE EXACT SAME LOGIC.


If I made an error, the error was here:

Quote
but in the second instance, we have clear evidence that the child is contagious.

I should have qualified that as:

Quote
but in the second instance, we have clear evidence that the child is potentially contagious.


That's why they call it pseudo science.

If you have a problem with the science, take it up with the manufacturer.

Check to see if your hypothetical has any basis in reality

Like I said, refer to the manufacturer. It's their "hypothetical". Not mine. Wink

Here's a non-hypothetical from the VAERS database (2013VAERSDATA/VAX):

VAERS_ID   RECVDATE   STATE   AGE_YRS   CAGE_YR   CAGE_MO   SEX   RPT_DATE   SYMPTOM_TEXT   DIED   DATEDIED   L_THREAT   ER_VISIT   HOSPITAL   HOSPDAYS   X_STAY   DISABLE   RECOVD   VAX_DATE   ONSET_DATE   NUMDAYS   LAB_DATA   V_ADMINBY   V_FUNDBY   OTHER_MEDS   CUR_ILL   HISTORY   PRIOR_VAX   SPLTTYPE
492174   05/21/2013   NY   15         M   05/21/2013   This spontaneous report as received from a other health professional (medical student) refers to a currently 15 years old male patient with T cell precursor lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) undergoing chemotherapy. On an unknown date the patient's brothers were vaccinated with a dose of varicella virus vaccine live (manufacturer unknown) lot # dose not reported, it was not known if the patient had been vaccinated. On an unknown date, the patient experienced disseminated varicella (hospitalization) and died (on an unspecified date). The cause of death was unknown. At the time of the report the outcome for disseminated varicella, patient's brothers were vaccinated with a dose varicella virus vaccine live were unknown. Additional information has been requested. The following information was obtained through follow-up and/or provided by the government. 05/28/13 Death Certificate Received. Final Cause of Death: Multi-organ System Failure due to or as a consequence of Varicella Zoster Viremia due to or as a consequence of Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia.  05/24/13 Vaccine records/medical records received. Service dates 06/06/01 to 08/05/11. DOB 11/18/97.   Y   05/08/2013      Y               N               OTH   OTH   No other medications   Chemotherapy; Precursor T-lymphoblastic lymphoma/leukaemia         WAES1305USA010047

VAERS_ID   VAX_TYPE   VAX_MANU   VAX_LOT   VAX_DOSE   VAX_ROUTE   VAX_SITE   VAX_NAME
494750   VARCEL   MERCK & CO. INC.   H009535      SC   LL   VARICELLA (VARIVAX)

And please, don't blame me for presenting actual evidence. I didn't make it. I didn't file the report. I don't maintain the database. If you don't like the evidence, then take it up with the CDC and vaccine manufacturer.

But, like I said, the topic is pretty toxic. It's simply impossible to even present facts or evidence from the manufacturers or CDC without being accused of all sorts of shenanigans. This is in part why I've tried to focus on the actual logic (or lack of) that fuels the "debate" (or screaming match, as it were).

I'd like to continue, but have to get back to the salt mines. smiley

202  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Movies or films you've seen lately on: February 11, 2015, 09:40:07 AM
I'd never seen a "One Step Beyond" episode before this evening.

The first episode? Pretty darn cool.

203  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Funky Character Art on: February 11, 2015, 08:17:35 AM
Just for fun. I'm sure everyone has seen them, but has no idea how to type them.

ᕕ(ᐛ)ᕗ

Maybe a mini-collection would be fun?
204  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Peer Review and the Scientific Process on: February 11, 2015, 07:14:08 AM
Actually... I think this off-topic bit has been productive. I believe that I inadvertently hit on an important point above:

Actually, this is an excellent example of where the ad hominem argument is good. (Would you hire a convicted child molester to babysit your children? Same argument and same basic case.)

For anyone reading that is not well versed in logic and argumentation theory:

Quote from: Good Reasoning Matters! (Little, Groarke, Tindale, 1989)
Thus, a good ad hominem is:

    An argument that a person's view should not be given credence or should be rejected outright because the person is deemed to be (i) not knowledgeable, or (ii) untrustworthy, or (iii) biased.


(No link - it's from a paper book!  ohmy )

The anti-vax argument is often ii and iii. However, there are some that claim i, i.e. that the science is wrong and that the researchers are... blah blah blah. I'm not going to bother with that as the claims for ii and iii are sufficient to illustrate that there are genuine objections that have not been adequately addressed. (Also, i has been addressed at length.)

Peer review is in part a pro hominem argument. Given the massive amounts of fraud, I think that points ii and iii in the quote above are relevant to it.

But, I think we've also gone over that before in this thread. The above is just one more illustration.
205  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: February 11, 2015, 06:50:35 AM


206  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Interesting "stuff" on: February 11, 2015, 06:37:04 AM

Worth a thread of its own.

From a comment:

Quote
* Only one person used correcthorsebatterystaple.

HAHAHA!  Thmbsup
207  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: February 11, 2015, 06:31:22 AM

208  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Peer Review and the Scientific Process on: February 11, 2015, 05:55:34 AM
[/b] Why kick them out? There is an argument for not vaccinating your kids, but hoping/expecting that they will get indirect immunisation (from cross-infection) from the newly-vaccinated children they go to school with.

Huh  huh?  That logic would imply that it's ok for other kids to get vaccine - in order to protect mine?!? - but not mine.  So I'd be anti-vaccine only for my child?  Something out of kilter there.


No - it makes sense. If you can get the benefit (limited immunity) without the risk (adverse effects), then it makes perfect sense. However, that cross-infection isn't a guarantee - it's only a chance, which is the "out of kilter" bit.


Not sure what any of this has to do with peer review and the scientific process though...

Strikes me as an active example of the process, albeit by non-professionals in the field  undecided tongue.  Sort of a peer review of Peer Review and the Scientific Process, as it were.

We are kind of off topic, but yes - I think there is some value in it as it does beat around that bush some. Besides, the topic will die down eventually.

209  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Peer Review and the Scientific Process on: February 11, 2015, 05:50:39 AM
Oh, how we love the courts/bureaucracies in Europe~!

http://www.blacklistednew...sm/41722/0/38/38/Y/M.html

Quote
On September 23, 2014, an Italian court in Milan award compensation to a boy for vaccine-induced autism.  
(See the Italian document here.)
  A childhood vaccine against six childhood diseases caused the boy’s permanent autism and brain damage.  While the Italian press has devoted considerable attention to this decision and its public health implications, the U.S. press has been silent.



As in possibly contagious? Not everybody who gets vaccinated will become contagious.

And not every unvaccinated kid gets sick.

So how about possibly having school-aged children always get vaccinated during the summer school break (as I always was) before returning to school? That's almost three full calendar months out of the classroom. Plenty of time to get it done - and recover from it. It only takes a minute.

Sure. Just keep them locked in the closet and ruin summer for them. Wink Besides, if they're locked in the closet/basement/dungeon, they're much safer - no cars, no pederasts, no bees, no falling off bikes, no drowning in pools/rivers, etc. etc. etc.

Ah, safety! Sweet, sweet safety!




What happens here is that a child may be sent home for not having up-to-date vaccinations (if you don't have a medical justification backed by a physician's signature or a "religious" exemption) since vaccinations are mandatory for school attendance in my town's public school system. Same rule goes for our private schools, of which there are four. The Catholic parochial school system requires proof of current vaccinations as a condition of attendance. It's spelled out in their terms of service. So between public, private, and parochial schools that's roughly 99 point something percent of all school children here.

And since school attendance (or authorized home schooling) is mandatory up to age 16 where I live, parents can run afoul of state truancy laws if their kids aren't attending school due to their not being vaccinated. So there's a bit of an incentive there as well.

Incentive? No. That's flat out coercion. At least call it what it is and don't sugar coat it. Euphemisms don't make for an honest debate that aims at discovering truth. We are out to discover truth? Right? Wink

That is a textbook example of the ad baculum. "Do X or else."

And it goes to show just how weak the pro-vaccine arguments are.

Resorting to force is the lowest form of argument. It effectively says, "I have no compelling logic or arguments, so I'll just become violent."

This is going to be somewhat upsetting for those that are vested in the pro side of the debate. But it doesn't make it any less true.

The fact remains that there are arguments from the anti-vax side that are never addressed, or if they are, they are not addressed in a serious way.

To make this a bit more concrete, I'll outline a fictional example and then draw the parallel.

ANDY'S COOKIES

Imagine Andy. He's selling cookies. Everyone knows that he has multiple criminal convictions for selling tainted food in the past that has crippled and killed some people. But not all of his food is tainted. In fact, most of Andy's food is perfectly good. Delicious even.

Andy knocks at your door and wants to sell you some cookies. Do you buy any? Do you recommend Andy's cookies to your friends? Do you force other people to eat Andy's cookies?

This is exactly parallel to how GSK, Merck, Eli Lilly, and many other pharmaceutical companies have been found criminally liabel many times over.

While the pro-vaccine side may make some good arguments in some places, this case is never adequately addressed. In fact, the case is further undermined by how vaccine courts are structured. The objection from the anti-vax side simply isn't addressed and it **IS** a valid argument.

Actually, this is an excellent example of where the ad hominem argument is good. (Would you hire a convicted child molester to babysit your children? Same argument and same basic case.)

For anyone reading that is not well versed in logic and argumentation theory:

Quote from: Good Reasoning Matters! (Little, Groarke, Tindale, 1989)
Thus, a good ad hominem is:

    An argument that a person's view should not be given credence or should be rejected outright because the person is deemed to be (i) not knowledgeable, or (ii) untrustworthy, or (iii) biased.


(No link - it's from a paper book!  ohmy )

The anti-vax argument is often ii and iii. However, there are some that claim i, i.e. that the science is wrong and that the researchers are... blah blah blah. I'm not going to bother with that as the claims for ii and iii are sufficient to illustrate that there are genuine objections that have not been adequately addressed. (Also, i has been addressed at length.)



Just to be clear here, I am NOT advocating a position. I'm outlining arguments and weaknesses in those arguments.

I've had vaccinations, and my daughter has as well. I looked into each one individually and decided based on a LOT of reading.

I believe my conclusions were summarised above by Iain:

You can't fight the statistical odds.

Hopefully I've outlined a tiny bit of some parts of the debate, and hopefully illustrated where there are some breakdowns in communication and how the sides are talking past each other rather than discussing with each other.




My only firm position is that the road of forced medication is not one that should be travelled. Ever.


210  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Peer Review and the Scientific Process on: February 10, 2015, 05:51:06 PM
Ok. I stand corrected. But that's also VARIVAX. (Chicken-pox, right?) So how many more vaccines have similiar concerns precisely? Current anti-vax arguments say all vaccines are unacceptably dangerous. I don't think that's correct.  (BTW, chicken pox is a very serious illness if contracted by an elderly person or someone with severe respiratory health problems.)

Ooops. Yes. I should have qualified that - not serious for children, etc. My bad.

As for other vaccines that leave the patient contagious, I don't know. I remember seeing the insert for one that I had years ago mentioning this, but I don't remember what it was, though I know it wasn't for chicken-pox (I've had chicken-pox, so I don't need vaccination against it).

But please don't think that I'm trying to say "all" vaccines are bad. I'm just having fun playing the devil's advocate here.

By the same token though, there are many out there that seem to want to advance the narrative as "all vaccines are good without question".

Going back to the the chance of spreading something post vaccination - if people who are exposed are already immunized either from a previous bout with the actual disease - or have been previously vaccinated as most vaccine protocols recommend - the individual infection is extremely unlikely to spread to those exposed.

Yes, but that's not an argument against the issue I brought up above. Typically vaccines are done on a schedule, e.g. it's probably irresponsible to inject a newborn with 5 litres of vaccines all at once. Wink (That was sarcastic hyperbole.)

So, if you take a typical school with different ages of children, you'll end up with some children not being vaccinated when others receive their vaccines. This is pretty much unavoidable.

So... do you kick those newly vaccinated kids out of school because they're now contagious?

That's an uncomfortable question for the pro-vaccine crowd because if they want to remain consistent in their "think of the children" argument, they MUST answer "yes". Answering "no" demonstrates that they simply do not care about children's health, and that they are instead vested in the idea of vaccination (as some kind of romantic idea that makes them feel good) rather than the actual act, effects, and science behind it.

I'm genuinely curious as to whether the pro-vaccine crowd would be for kicking kids out of school while they are contagious from something like Varivax.

However, my gut tells me that the general answer would be "no". In my own experience, I don't find that many people are very consistent in their principles if it puts some sort of burden on them.

This is the same sort of thing as the "I believe in free speech BUT..." line of logic. "But" simply means that a principle is going to be abandoned.

The question there, as far as I can see, is whether or not the principle can be "saved". Have we thought it through? Have we tried to rescue it? Have we done our due diligence? Or are we simply being lazy?




211  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Peer Review and the Scientific Process on: February 10, 2015, 10:30:34 AM
@Ren - IIUC you can't (except in that rare situation with the old oral polio vaccine - which is no longer administered) come down with the illness that an attenuated-live vaccine is designed to provide immunization for unless the batch that was administered was defective. And my understanding is that cases of defective vaccine batches making it into actual circulation are extremely rare occurrences.

Sorry, but no. There are some vaccines that make the patient contagious for a period of time. You only need to check the insert to verify.

You can find it in some inserts under some section  like in the below, 5.8 "Risk of Vaccine Virus Transmission". Here's a bit for the VARIVAX vaccine:

[attachimg=1]

There are more. That's just one. The recommendation is for 6 weeks.

Here's a bit from another insert:

[attachimg=2]

That lists 28 weeks, or 7 months.

Again... just what part of this is hard to understand for people? Everyone wants to believe that vaccines are some sort of magical pixie dust.

PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT (PSA):

VACCINES ARE NOT MAGICAL PIXIE DUST!

Vaccines are, however, damn good insurance. With vaccines it's all about risk minimization and mitigation. Because at this stage of our medical knowledge and technology, that's about as good as we can make it.

Yes. Exactly.

But the pro-vaccine crowd almost ALWAYS touts all the positive benefits and completely ignores any of the possible adverse issues or other "inconvenient" facts. Again... this is about approaching the topic sanely and measuring benefits vs. costs.

I'm sorry, but nobody gets to choose what parts of reality apply to them. Unfortunately, 100% of reality applies to everyone... vaccine advocates included.

This only goes to show, yet once again, how the mainstream views are so grossly distorted and perverse.

What really pisses me off is all these self-righteous zealots who preach "science" and then want to ignore anything that doesn't fit their personally acceptable narrative. This is a recurring theme in many fields, not just in "vaccines".

Gravity applies to Wile E. Coyote just as it does to everyone else. Nobody escapes nature. Not even psychotic zealots. tongue

Now, chickenpox (for the Varivax vaccine above) isn't very serious. But it's just one example. Not all vaccines are equal, and the zealots trying to portray them as all being unicorn farting rainbows do nothing to help the situation.

Each vaccine needs to be treated on its own merits. Period. End of story. Most offer great benefits, but lying about them does not engender trust.

Given the massive disinformation and the non-stop lies about vaccines, can we blame people for being against them?

Or, would you trust someone that you knew constantly lied to you?

This isn't difficult to understand -- the vaccine zealots do more harm than good when they constantly lie and cover up inconvenient facts time and time again.






212  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Movies or films you've seen lately on: February 10, 2015, 10:00:25 AM
They're both out on DVD! Thmbsup

One Step Beyond seems to have 3 seeders on TPB. Wink tongue

Not so much luck for Thriller though. Sad

The Alcoa thing is interesting though... They have quite a history.
213  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: DARPA Hacks GM's OnStar To Remote Control A Chevrolet Impala on: February 10, 2015, 09:54:15 AM
As Stoic alluded to earlier, in any tit-for-tat tech exchange, the bad inevitably comes along with the good.

All too often, it seems to precede the good...

it will end badly. undecided

Yep.
214  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: DARPA Hacks GM's OnStar To Remote Control A Chevrolet Impala on: February 10, 2015, 07:27:30 AM
+10 on the old school - straight mech - classic, I'm shopping for a project now.

I will be in the project market pretty soon. We're almost ready for the big move, and one of those things that I'm looking forward to is getting back to having enough space to DO stuff.

The last while I've been going nuts on educating myself on all kinds of things for that. Too much to learn though... I'm guessing a lot will be "trial by fire". smiley

Back to cars...

I definitely want at least 1 vehicle that can't be shut down out of the blue. Forget DARPA -- I remember what it was like to be 14, and building something to shut down all the cars within X radius would totally have been a "fun" thing to experiment with... We don't always think very clearly when we're 12 or 14.
215  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / DARPA Hacks GM's OnStar To Remote Control A Chevrolet Impala on: February 10, 2015, 05:50:29 AM
Connected car? IoT? Oh, sure! This is totally gonna work out just peachy! Grin

http://jalopnik.com/darpa...-a-chevrolet-i-1684593523

Quote
In a broad-reaching report by 60 Minutes about DARPA and the Internet of Things, the Department of Defense has shown that it can hack General Motors' OnStar system to remote control a last-gen Chevrolet Impala.9

DARPA has a budget of around half a billion dollars a year and its Information Innovation Office is headed by Dan Kaufman, who employs a team of researchers that focus on increasing national security through revolutionary projects. One of those projects involves hacking the connected car, and this is what they found:

[VIDEO]

According to the report, which is scant on technical details, DARPA engineers dialed in through the Impala's OnStar system, transmitted a data packet that confused the internal computers, and then planted a malicious bit of code that allowed it to reprogram control systems on the ECU.10

That allowed them to do everything from turn on the windshield wipers to honk the horn, and even controll the throttle and brakes, putting a hapless Lesley Stahl through a line of cones.11

The piece from 60 Minutes, which doesn't exactly have the greatest track record when it comes to automotive reporting (and more), is bolstered by a report from the office of Massachusetts Senator Ed Markey. The report, due out tomorrow, supposedly states that all new cars can be hacked and that, according to 60 Minutes, "only two out of 16 car makers can diagnose or respond to an infiltration in real-time."12131415

We're waiting to get our hands on the report from Senator Markey's office and have reached out to DARPA for more details on how the OnStar vulnerability was exploited. GM has yet to respond to a request for comment.

You can watch the full story from 60 Minutes here.

More at the link with video.

This is why I want to buy 1 extra old beater car for $500 or so -- just to have something that isn't connected.

If you feel like going down the rabbit hole, just say "Michael Hastings" 3x in front of the bathroom mirror in the dark... Wink

216  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Movies or films you've seen lately on: February 10, 2015, 05:41:18 AM
Working my way through the original 1963 series:

([url=http://www.donationcoder.com/forum/index.php?topic=34481.msg375153#msg375153]see attachment in previous post)[/i][/url]

Ah, the good old days smiley

Heh! I did the entire series about 2 years ago. It's still an excellent series! Don't forget the new series as well. It's also quite enjoyable!  Thmbsup

I also did the Twilight Zone -- both the original and new series.
217  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Interesting "stuff" on: February 10, 2015, 05:32:57 AM
Being a casual sport archer, I found the following video by Anna Maltese (archery instructor, bow-maker, tournament competitor, fire archery practitioner) rebutting some of Lars ("fastest archer on the planet") Andersen's recent postulations rather interesting:

The original video was pretty fun! (I watched that first.)

The rebuttal, not so much -- she's basically just heckling a magician (did you really believe that the magician's wand was exhumed from an ancient tomb in 1837 after...). Perhaps she should have read the original video's description. Buddy mentions some of the things she takes issue with in her rebuttal. Reading all of it, and applying the principle of charity (a lost art today that I have recently rediscovered from my extensive historical readings!!! tongue ), it seems that Lars is aiming at producing entertainment much like street entertainers and magicians have been doing for ages (complete with lots of embellishments), and not a historical documentary. But, that was just my read on it Lars -- perhaps I should have taken him much more seriously? tongue Grin

218  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Peer Review and the Scientific Process on: February 10, 2015, 04:38:24 AM
This may be off topic, but I wouldn't mind some of your input here.
Recently, a lot of people around me have been getting worked about about the anti-vaccination issues.  I've been listening to the arguments, and I must say that I'm legitimately confused.  Politics or beliefs aside, the question I want to answer is, "Should I vaccinate?  How do I make this decision wisely?"

If you consult with a doctor that isn't blindly religious on the issue, most likely your doctor will recommend vaccination, but not necessarily for everything. Not all people need all vaccines. There actually is room for thought on the topic, though the current dialectic pretty much excludes any rational debate.

For example, do you need to be vaccinated for Japanese encephalitis? It's a horrible, crippling disease that utterly destroys people. Chances are that you don't as it is only found in certain places.

Are you at risk for cervical cancer? If you're male, then no. And here is where the insanity begins, because there are quite a few people that want forced vaccinations for boys. I.am.not.kidding.

Talk to 1 or more doctors. Read up on the issues.


The closest I've been able to come to an answer is along these lines:
Let's say there's a disease where I have 5% chance of dying.  The vaccine is available, and with it there is the 1% risk of dying.  So in that case, the gamble is mathematically worth the risk.

That's correct given that you will get the disease. If there's a 1% chance of contracting the disease, then 5% * 1% vs. 1% doesn't justify the vaccine, mathematically that is. But that doesn't take into account other possible problems from the disease, e.g. 50% chance of blindness, etc.

All too often people talk about mortality rates, but blindness, deafness, and many other horrible effects also come with some diseases.

Then there are diseases like rubella that aren't serious (or as serious as others). Rubella is mostly relevant for pregnant women.

But it's just not that simple.  Do we know these percentages?  What if the vaccine is for a non-lethal disease, like a cold or mild flu?  Are these risk quantification reliable?  I don't know the answer at all, to be honest.  And it's a sensitive issue in my circles as there actually are cases of life-altering mental problems that have been attributed to vaccination.  I never ask, but I want to ask how do we know it was the vaccines? 

How do we know? Good question. When you look at some of the crippling effects in some cases, and the timelines, then it's pretty obvious, but that's not scientific proof, though it is sometimes enough to get settlements from the secret vaccine courts.

When a friend of mine gets a flu shot, he's pretty much guaranteed to get the flu -- and he no longer gets any flu shots. But, that's annecdotal.

I think it really depends on the person - not all people are the same.

Oh, I just remembered a bit more insanity... This is fun~! Grin

A common argument that I read all the time is about "the children" and how people want to exclude unvaccinated kids from schools.

Ok. For the sake of argument... Let's run with that. Wink

Some vaccines turn the recipient into a carrier for anywhere from 2 weeks to 90 days.

So, for those vaccines, shouldn't vaccinated children be excluded from schools until they are no longer contagious? Not all kids can get the same vaccine at the same time (if that even mattered).

In the first bit above, we have no evidence that any unvaccinated child has any disease, but in the second instance, we have clear evidence that the child is contagious. What to do? tongue

Fun fun fun~! Grin

I do like to pick on the pro-vaccine crowd as they're such wonderful targets, and especially the sanctimonious, uneducated ones that merely parrot what they heard on CNN. Picking on the anti-vaccine crowd isn't really much fun. Like, how do you make fun of a kid getting measles, which has a 0.1% mortality rate in developed countries? There really isn't much of a joke there.

219  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Peer Review and the Scientific Process on: February 10, 2015, 04:12:26 AM
And there are far more options than the false dilemma/excluded middle fallacy you're introducing.

I was wondering if I'd get called out on that~! Grin  tease

It's by obstetrician gynecologist Dr. Amy Tuteur M.D. And the rest can be found on her blog The Skeptical OB.

Regarding the article there, it was a nicely done bit of name calling, and not much more.

The vax debate is pretty toxic. Nobody actually tries to communicate. It's nothing more than a yelling match with lots of name calling in the VAST majority of cases.

The most toxic people are the rabid pro-vaccine people that do their utmost to alienate the exact people whose behaviour they want to change. It's counter-productive at best. Then there's the crowd screaming for governments to make them mandatory... like that'd ever work out well...

This is not a scientific crisis. It's a people problem.

Yep. That.

Nor do I see where doing so should automatically point the discussion towards the basement.

Because the topic is toxic. People are not even remotely rational about it. It would degenerate quickly.

Now, a discussion about the discussion, that can probably be had much more sanely.

220  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Peer Review and the Scientific Process on: February 09, 2015, 10:32:38 AM
^Far from it. Grin Wink

So you believe in corporate research then? Wink

(You can't have it all and have it both ways...)

B-b-b-but...
221  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Peer Review and the Scientific Process on: February 08, 2015, 10:30:33 PM
^A thought: perhaps we're too easily equating 'corporate researchers' with scientists? And 'corporate sponsored research' with science? Wink

What's wrong with you? Are you one of those anti-vaxxers? tongue Wink
222  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Peer Review and the Scientific Process on: February 08, 2015, 09:13:40 PM
(Cross-post from down "there".)

And more from the fraud dept...

http://www.telegraph.co.u...science-scandal-ever.html

Quote
Following my last article, Homewood checked a swathe of other South American weather stations around the original three. In each case he found the same suspicious one-way “adjustments”. First these were made by the US government’s Global Historical Climate Network (GHCN). They were then amplified by two of the main official surface records, the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (Giss) and the National Climate Data Center (NCDC), which use the warming trends to estimate temperatures across the vast regions of the Earth where no measurements are taken. Yet these are the very records on which scientists and politicians rely for their belief in “global warming”.

Homewood has now turned his attention to the weather stations across much of the Arctic, between Canada (51 degrees W) and the heart of Siberia (87 degrees E). Again, in nearly every case, the same one-way adjustments have been made, to show warming up to 1 degree C or more higher than was indicated by the data that was actually recorded. This has surprised no one more than Traust Jonsson, who was long in charge of climate research for the Iceland met office (and with whom Homewood has been in touch). Jonsson was amazed to see how the new version completely “disappears” Iceland’s “sea ice years” around 1970, when a period of extreme cooling almost devastated his country’s economy.



Change all the data to make it fit your narrative, then let people review your narrative and verify it against the data.

Oh, where have we heard that story before? Oh... that's right... a Merck whistleblower...

Hm...
223  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: February 08, 2015, 07:03:40 PM
Not silly, but technology:



http://www.smbc-comics.com/

224  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Peer Review and the Scientific Process on: February 08, 2015, 05:06:13 PM
Just saw this:



225  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Peer Review and the Scientific Process on: February 08, 2015, 04:31:56 PM
Marcia Angell is a Senior Lecturer in Social Medicine 
at Harvard Medical School and former Editor in Chief of The New England Journal of Medicine.


 


http://www.nybooks.com/ar...orsa-story-of-corruption/

Quote
Drug Companies & Doctors: A Story of Corruption

It's a long article, but it is worth a read for anyone interested in the general topic of this thread.

tl;dr - The Medical Industrial Complex is full of fraud.

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