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Friendly Fire in the "War on Disease" by Sandy Gottstein

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It took 26 years for the families of babies who died from a perhaps well-meaning, but ill-conceived, effort to prevent blindness by delivering intravenous vitamin E to “premies”, to get compensation.  Finally, though, there is some justice in the form of the settlement of a class-action suit brought long ago against the manufacturers.

The lawsuit concerned 38 babies identified by the CDC as having been effected, although more are known to have died.  Each and every one of those deaths was tragic and unnecessary. 

The tragedy would have been compounded, however, had no one cared to investigate the deaths.  The tragedy would have been compounded if the deaths were presumed to be unrelated and relegated to the rock-heap of coincidental events.

But they were acknowledged and investigated; additional unnecessary deaths were thus averted.

But, of course, it was investigated.  It was a vitamin, for God’s sake!  Who cares if vitamins are found guilty? 

No one cares, at least no one with any real clout.

Those with the real clout are in the drug, not the supplement, world, of course.  And you can bet they can and will defend their turf.

That defense is nowhere more obvious than in the vaccine arena, where up is down, in is out, and “ignorance is strength”.  It’s a cockamamie 1984/Alice in Wonderland kind of world where you don’t have to do your homework to know the answers and brothers are ever so big.  Why investigate all those hundreds of thousands* of vaccine-associated adverse event reports?  And the thousands of reported vaccine-associated deaths*?  Who cares if they occur within hours or days of vaccination?  They already know they aren’t related!  Isn’t that fun!?

It’s a serious subject, but the FDA and CDC, whose charge it is to follow up and investigate reported adverse reactions, treat it like it’s some meaningless sport.  As do the vaccine manufacturers who set out to “scientifically” prove that vaccines don’t cause damage, rather than to discover whether or not they actually do.  And adding to all the merriment, you can even accuse those who question their safety of being anti-science and pro-disease!  Ta-dah!

It’s a big joke to them.  And they’re laughing all the way to the bank.

Now please watch the pendulum.  You’re getting sleepy.  This war on disease is so peaceful.  And the deaths save lives.  And the fire is always friendly.  You can even snuggle up to it and read your favorite book before drifting off to sleepless dreams.  What, you can’t wake up?  Nighty-night.

*These reported vaccine-associated side effects may represent as little as 1% of what would get reported if there was active, post-marketing surveillance.

 

Sandy Gottstein

4-12-2010

"Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty." - Wendell Phillips (1811-1884), paraphrasing John Philpot Curran (1808)