Facebook Ranking News Sources By Trust Is A Bad Idea… But No One At Facebook Will Read Our Untrustworthy Analysis

At some point I need to write a bigger piece on these kinds of things, though I’ve mentioned it here and there over the past couple of years. For all the complaints about how “bad stuff” is appearing on the big platforms (mainly: Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter), it’s depressing how many people think the answer is “well, those platforms should stop the bad stuff.” As we’ve discussed, this is problematic on multiple levels. First, handing over the “content policing” function to these platforms is, well, probably not such a good idea. Historically they’ve been really bad at it, and there’s little reason to think they’re going to get any better no matter how much money they throw at artificial intelligence or how many people they hire to moderate content. Second, it requires some sort of objective reality for what’s “bad stuff.” And that’s impossible. One person’s bad stuff is another person’s good stuff. And almost any decision is going to get criticized by someone or another. It’s why suddenly a bunch of foolish people are falsely claiming that these platforms are required by law to be “neutral.” (They’re not).

But, as more and more pressure is put on these platforms, eventually they feel they have little choice to do something… and inevitably, they try to step up their content policing. The latest, as you may have heard, is that Facebook has started to rank news organizations by trust.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Tuesday that the company has already begun to implement a system that ranks news organizations based on trustworthiness, and promotes or suppresses its content based on that metric.

Zuckerberg said the company has gathered data on how consumers perceive news brands by asking them to identify whether they have heard of various publications and if they trust them.

“We put [that data] into the system, and it is acting as a boost or a suppression, and we’re going to dial up the intensity of that over time,” he said. “We feel like we have a responsibility to further [break] down polarization and find common ground.”

But, as with the lack of an objective definition of “bad,” you’ve got the same problem with “trust.” For example, I sure don’t trust “the system” that Zuckerberg mentions above to do a particularly good job of determining which news sources are trustworthy. And, again, trust is such a subjective concept, that lots of people inherently trust certain sources over others — even when those sources have long histories of being full of crap. And given how much “trust” is actually driven by “confirmation bias” it’s difficult to see how this solution from Facebook will do any good. Take, for example, (totally hypothetically), that Facebook determines that Infowars is untrustworthy. Many people may agree that a site famous for spreading conspiracy theories and pushing sketchy “supplements” that you need because of conspiracy theory x, y or z, is not particularly trustworthy. But, for those who do like Infowars, how are they likely to react to this kind of thing? They’re not suddenly going to decide the NY Times and the Wall Street Journal are more trustworthy. They’re going to see it as a conspiracy for Facebook to continue to suppress the truth.

Confirmation bias is a hell of a drug, and Facebook trying to push people in one direction is not going to go over well.

To reveal all of this, Zuckerberg apparently invited a bunch of news organizations to talk about it:

Zuckerberg met with a group of news media executives at the Rosewood Sand Hill hotel in Menlo Park after delivering his keynote speech at Facebook’s annual F8 developer conference Tuesday.

The meeting included representatives from BuzzFeed News, the Information, Quartz, the New York Times, CNN, the Wall Street Journal, NBC, Recode, Univision, Barron’s, the Daily Beast, the Economist, HuffPost, Insider, the Atlantic, the New York Post, and others.

We weren’t invited. Does that mean Facebook doesn’t view us as trustworthy? I guess so. So it seems unlikely that he’ll much care about what we have to say, but we’ll say it anyway (though you probably won’t be able to read this on Facebook):

Facebook: You’re Doing It Wrong.

Facebook should never be the arbiter of truth, no matter how much people push it to be. Instead, it can and should be providing tools for its users to have more control. Let them create better filters. Let them apply their own “trust” metrics, or share trust metrics that others create. Or, as we’ve suggested on the privacy front, open up the system to let third parties come in and offer up their own trust rankings. Will that reinforce some echo chambers and filter bubbles? Perhaps. But that’s not Facebook’s fault — it’s part of the nature of human beings and confirmation bias.

Or, hey, Facebook could take a real leap forward and move away from being a centralized silo of information and truly disrupt its own setup — pushing the information and data out to the edges, where the users could have more control over it themselves. And not in the simplistic manner of Facebook’s other “big” announcement of the week about how it’ll now let users opt-out of Facebook tracking them around the web (leaving out that they kinda needed to do this to deal with the GDPR in the EU). Opting out is one thing — pushing the actual data control back to the end users and distributing it is something entirely different.

Source Article from http://govtslaves.info/2018/05/facebook-ranking-news-sources-by-trust-is-a-bad-idea-but-no-one-at-facebook-will-read-our-untrustworthy-analysis/

Artificial Intelligence Causes Its First Death – Can We Really Trust A Robot To Do Our Driving For Us?



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On March 18th, 2018, the history of the automated vehicle industry was forever altered, as an automated vehicle caused its first reported fatality in Tempe, Arizona. A 49 year old woman named Elaine Herzberg, was struck and killed, by the vehicle while it was in autonomous mode.

A video released by Tempe Police is bringing up new questions as to why the systems failed to prevent the accident. The Volvo SUV owned and operated by Uber collided with Herzberg who was jaywalking with a bicycle across three lanes of traffic.

It is currently unclear what has gone wrong as there was a driver present in the vehicle and still, it did not prevent a collision. “I think the sensors on the vehicle should have seen the pedestrian well in advance,” says Steven Shladover, a UC Berkeley research engineer who has been studying automated systems for nearly a decade. “If she had been moving erratically, it would have been difficult for the systems to predict where this person was going,” Shaldover continues, “this is one that should have been straightforward.” (source)

Local police are considering how to proceed with the investigation and whether criminal charges will be laid. Arizona is seen as an industry leader and testing ground for autonomous cars. The state government updated laws and regulations from 2015 to include fully autonomous vehicles with an executive order issued by the governor early March 2018. Governor Doug Ducey said “this executive order embraces new technologies by creating an environment that supports autonomous vehicle innovation and maintains a focus on public safety.”

According to the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) standards, the Volvo was a level 4 or 5 which means that there is a high to full automation of the car monitoring the driving environment with little to no human response required for the operation of the vehicle. It appears with this incident that the regulatory framework is ahead of the technology and is potentially putting the public at risk, turning people into the guinea pigs for these companies to test their luxurious and expensive new technologies.

Uber issued a statement: “The video is disturbing and heartbreaking to watch, and our thoughts continue to be with Elaine’s loved ones.”

Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi tweeted “Some incredibly sad news out of Arizona. We’re thinking of the victim’s family as we work with local law enforcement to understand what happened.” As a response to the incident, Uber has voluntarily grounded its entire autonomous fleet, suspending operations in San Fransisco, Tempe, Pittsburgh, and Toronto. But is this enough of a response to a critical question: Are self-driving cars currently safe enough to be tested on live streets?

It is too soon to say. In 2016, there were 1.18 fatalities for every 100 million miles that had American human drivers behind the wheel. With a grand total of 3.2 trillion miles driven that year, human driving accounts for the vast majority of vehicles on the road.

In contrast, Uber has driven 2 million miles with autonomous vehicles and Waymo, the industry leader, has reported it has reached 4 million miles with autonomous vehicles. Therefore, the difference in miles driven is statistically too small to compare autonomous driving with human driving. However, at 2 million miles, Uber already has a fatality. This suggests that the safety features of autonomous cars are not as safe as corporations wish they are. The question arises, is it safe to rollout self driving cars in multiple cities? Or should regulations be tighter to ensure public safety?

Challenges still exist in the software side of autonomous driving. A Mckinsey report published in May 2017 says there are three types of challenges:

1) Object analysis, or how the software interprets the multitude of data of objects the car encounters on a journey. For example, is the object stationary or moving? Is it moving towards, away, perpendicular or alongside the vehicle?

2) Decision making systems that can mimic human driving behaviour

3) A fail-safe mechanism that allows the car software to fail without putting its passengers and people around it in danger.

Needless to say, the auto industry is gearing up towards the eventual and perhaps inevitable industry wide emergence of autonomous vehicles in the coming decade. However, lawmakers need to make public safety a priority and ensure proper regulation and extensive valid testing is completed before allowing autonomous vehicles on the streets.


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Do You Trust This Computer?






Do You Trust This Computer?


April 7th, 2018

Via: doyoutrustthiscomputer.org:

Do You Trust This Computer? from Busy Child on Vimeo.














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Students Make Home-Made Radiation Detectors Near Fukushima Because They Don’t TRUST Their Government

Fukushima

Fukushima

SCMP–Beneath the roof on the Seirinji Buddhist temple in Japan’s Fukushima region hangs an unlikely adornment: a Geiger counter collecting radiation readings.

The machine sends data to Safecast, an organisation created after the March 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster that says it has built the world’s largest radiation data set, thanks to the efforts of citizen scientists like Seirinji’s priest Sadamaru Okano.

Like many Japanese, Okano lost faith in the government after the nuclear meltdown seven years ago.

“The government didn’t tell us the truth, they didn’t tell us the true measures,” he said.

Okano was in a better position than most to doubt the government line, having developed an amateur interest in nuclear technology two decades earlier after the Chernobyl disaster.

He started measuring local radiation levels in 2007, so when the disaster happened, he had baseline data.

“The readings were so high … 50 times higher than natural radiation,” he said of the post-disaster data. “I was amazed … the news was telling us there was nothing, the administration was telling us there was nothing to worry about.”

That lack of trustworthy information was the genesis of Safecast, said co-founder Pieter Franken, who was in Tokyo with his family when the disaster hit.

Franken and several friends gathered data by attaching Geiger counters to cars and driving around.

“The system to do that didn’t exist and the only way to solve that problem was to build it ourselves,” he said. “So that’s what we did.”

Within a week, the group had a prototype and began getting readings that suggested the 20km (12 mile) exclusion zone declared around the Fukushima plant had no basis in the data, Franken said.

In some cases, “evacuees were sent from areas with lower radiation to areas with higher radiation”, he said.

The zone was redrawn, but for many local residents it was too late to restore trust in the government.

Okano sent his mother, wife and son away while he stayed with his flock.

But a year later, based on his own readings and after decontamination efforts, he brought them back.

He learned about Safecast’s efforts and in 2013 installed one of their static counters on his temple, in part to help reassure worshippers.

“I told them: we are measuring the radiation on a daily basis … so if you access the [Safecast] website you can choose [whether you think] it’s safe or not.”

In Koriyama, 40km away, Norio Watanabe’s teenage pupils have been building basic versions of Safecast’s Geiger counter. The girls pored over instructions on where to place diodes and wires.

Watanabe has been a Safecast volunteer since 2011, and has a mobile Geiger counter in his car.

In the days after the disaster, evacuees flocked to Koriyama, which was outside the evacuation zone, so he assumed his town was safe.

“But after I started to do the measurements, I realised there was a high level of risk here as well,” he said.

He sent his children away, but stayed behind to look after his mother, a decision he believes may have contributed to him getting thyroid cancer.

“As a scientist, I think the chance that it was caused by the Fukushima accident might be 50-50, but in my heart, I think it was likely [to be] the cause,” he said.

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Source Article from http://govtslaves.info/2018/03/students-make-home-made-radiation-detectors-near-fukushima-because-they-dont-trust-their-government/

The Vaccine Program: Betrayal of Public Trust & Institutional Corruption—Part 3 of 7



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Note from the World Mercury Project Team:  Following is Part Three in Vera Sharav’s seven-part exposé of the complex and widespread corruption that exists in the vaccination program including collusion of public health officials to deceive the public, the “willful blindness” by the medical community and the callous disregard for the plight of thousands of children who suffer irreversible harm. Sharav’s research is a must-read by those in our community.

You can read part 1 here, and part 2 here.

The Brighton Collaboration Was Established To Lend an Air Of “Authority” To Centrally Controlled Vaccine Safety Assessments, Controlled Research, & “Knowledge Management”

The Brighton Collaboration — and the Brighton Collaboration Foundation (established in 2003) — is an integral part of an elaborate international network of institutions promoting high vaccine utilization.

This “authoritative” consortium exerts extraordinary influence on vaccination policies worldwide and ensures that vaccine safety assessments enhance vaccine utilization goals. Vaccine stakeholders effectively control the science, the research, and the reports that get published in medical and public health journals. The broad range of the Brighton Collaboration’s international projects, initiatives, and tools for vaccine safety assessments reflect the bias of its partners, all of who are stakeholders in the business of vaccines; their interest is in ensuring high utilization of vaccines.

The Brighton Collaboration laid the foundation for gaining control of vaccine-related information by establishing an infrastructure for developing universal vaccine risk assessment standards, prescribing vaccine research strategies and methods, forming expert advisory panels, influencing journal publication selection, generating propaganda campaigns to gain trust.

One of its stated missions is to increase public confidence in the safety of vaccines.

“The Brighton Collaboration, together with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine’s Vaccine Confidence Project, is promoting research on the determinants of trust and distrust in vaccines generally as well as on the drivers of vaccine «scares», [and vaccine hesitancy] the manner in which they develop and spread, and effective strategies to best address vaccine safety concerns.”

This collaborating partnership of vaccine stakeholders re-defined what qualifies as an adverse reaction to a vaccine. When newborn infants suddenly died within days following vaccination, the Brighton Collaboration re-defined sudden infant deaths within 10 days of vaccination, declaring the deaths “unrelated to the vaccine”. [See Appendix 8]

Their primary goal is to protect high vaccination rates with a stream of positive reports. Thus, grants are awarded only to those whose research proposals are designed to validate the safety of vaccines. A second goal is to prevent research that could document safety hazards that would undermine vaccination policies. The main objectives of the Brighton Collaboration:40

  • To raise global awareness of the availability of standardized case definitions and guidelines for data collection, analysis and presentation, and to educate about the benefit of and monitor their global use and to facilitate access,
  • To develop single standardized case definitions for specific AEFIs,
  • To prepare guidelines for data collectionanalysis and presentation for global use,
  • To develop and implement study protocols for evaluation of case definitions and guidelines in clinical trials and surveillance systems. (WHO. Vaccine Safety Basics)

This “authoritative” consortium exerts extraordinary influence on vaccination policies worldwide and ensures that vaccine safety assessments enhance vaccine utilization goals. Vaccine stakeholders effectively control the science, the research, and the reports that get published in medical and public health journals. The broad range of the Brighton Collaboration’s international projects, initiatives, and tools for vaccine safety assessments reflect the bias of its partners, all of who are stakeholders in the business of vaccines; their interest is in ensuring high utilization of vaccines.

Next to CDC, the most influential institutional entity in global vaccination policies is the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (founded in 2000) with its staggering investment portfolio of $40 billion. The Foundation’s grants awards ensure that the Bill and Melinda Gates interests are furthered. The Foundation has given the WHO more than $1.5 billion. [Wikipedia]

The Brighton Foundation’s 2016 Annual Report credits the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for:

[making] a lot of this possible through projects like the Global Alignment of Immunisation Safety Assessment in Pregnancy ( GAIA)”. “The aim of GAIA is to improve data to strengthen immunisation programs involving pregnant women by harmonizing maternal, foetal, and neonatal health outcome assessments, with a specific focus on low and middle income Countries (LMIC)”.

The Gates Foundation’s focus on underdeveloped, poor countries is not viewed by the local population as an example of beneficence, but rather as abominable human exploitation. Professor Patrick Bond, a political economist  (University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, SA, who had been in Nelson Mandella’s new South African government), describes Gates’  unseemly business-philanthropic practices and agenda of the Gates Foundation are viewed as ruthless and immoral in an article in CounterPunch  (2016).[34] Those tactics have garnered Bill and Melinda Gates $80 billion. The foundation’s pervasive influence in international development is through its aggressive promotion of both vaccines and genetically modified food. The Gates Foundation deploys international consortiums – such as GAVI– to influence public vaccination policy and to spread propaganda. Prof. Bond noted that:

Gates’ “influence is so pervasive that many actors in international development, which would otherwise critique the policy and practice of the foundation, are unable to speak out independently as a result of its funding and patronage… Privatised health and education are Gates’ speciality. But in India, a Gates-funded trial on the genital cancer-causing disease Human papilloma virus was cancelled by the government because thousands of girls aged 10-14 were victims of ethics violations such as forged consent forms and lack of health insurance; seven died. The case is now in the country’s Supreme Court.”

the most damage done within South Africa was Gates’ promotion of intellectual property (IP) rights. Long-term monopoly patents were granted not only to Gates for his Microsoft software, but for life-saving medicines. IP became a fatal barrier to millions of HIV+ people who, thanks to Big Pharma’s profiteering, were denied AIDS medicines which [resulted] in at least 330,000 avoidable AIDS deaths.”

The following excerpt from a report by Research Unit for Political Economy (RUPE), a registered public trust organization in India provides a hint of the magnitude of moral corruption:[35]

“In the mid-2000s] Africa [sic] experienced an “unprecedented increase in health research involving humans” who were typically “poverty-stricken and poorly educated”; the results were predictably lethal. 

In 2010 the Gates Foundation funded a Phase III trial of a malaria vaccine developed by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), administering the experimental treatment to thousands of infants across seven African countries. Eager to secure the WHO approval necessary to license the vaccine for global distribution, GSK and BMGF declared the trials a smashing success, and the popular press uncritically reproduced the publicity.

Few bothered to look closely at the study’s fine print, which revealed that the trials resulted in 151 deaths and caused “serious adverse effects” (e.g., paralysis, seizures, febrile convulsions) in 1048 of 5949 children aged 5-17 months.

Similar stories emerged in the wake of the Gates-funded MenAfriVac campaign in Chad, where unconfirmed reports alleged that 50 of 500 children forcibly vaccinated for meningitis later developed paralysis. Citing additional abuses, a South African newspaper declared: “We are guinea pigs for the drugmakers.”

It was in India, however, that the implications of BMGF’s collaboration with Big Pharma first rose to widespread public attention.  In 2010 seven adolescent tribal girls in Gujarat and Andhra Pradesh died after receiving injections of HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) vaccines as part of a large-scale “demonstrational study” funded by the Gates Foundation and administered by PATH. The vaccines, developed by GSK and Merck, were given to approximately 23,000 girls between 10 and 14 years of age, ostensibly to guard against cervical cancers they might develop in old age.

Extrapolating from trial data, Indian physicians later estimated that at least 1,200 girls experienced severe side effects or developed auto-immune disorders as a result of the injections. No follow-up examinations or medical care were offered to the victims.Further investigations revealed pervasive violations of ethical norms: vulnerable village girls were virtually press-ganged into the trials, their parents bullied into signing consent forms they could not read by PATH representatives who made false claims about the safety and efficacy of the drugs.  In many cases signatures were simply forged”.

Research Grants Awarded By the WHO Are Funded By CDC.

Needless to say, those who control the funding sources set the agenda as well as the parameters of vaccine safety research. Thus, the vaccine research literature is similarly corrupted by conflicts of interests and [as will be demonstrated below] fraudulent, CDC- sponsored studies that were methodically skewed to promote high vaccination rates.

The same year that the IOM issued its dubious thimerosal report, a review of aluminum-containing DTP vaccines was published in The Lancet (2004). [36] The review was commissioned by the WHO; the principal author was Dr. Tom Jefferson. The reviewers acknowledged the following serious scientific flaws in the studies they reviewed:

“poor reporting led to substantial loss of data, which was only partly obviated by statistical manipulation of the confidence intervals around the estimates of effect for one outcome”;

“Overall, the methodological quality of included studies was low. Few reports gave details of the randomization process, allocation concealment, reason for withdrawals, or strategies to deal with them in analysis. Inconsistencies in reporting, lack of clarity on numerators and denominators, variability of outcome definitions, and lack of outcome definitions to much loss of data.

Despite the serious invalidating the studies reviewed and the absence of scientifically valid evidence to support “reassuring” conclusions about the safety of vaccine adjuvants — specifically thimerosal and aluminum — Dr. Jefferson and his Cochrane colleagues delivered a conclusion crafted to protect government vaccination policies and industry profits (of course) – just as the politicized IOM panel had done.

It is disheartening that a scientist of Dr. Jefferson’s stature recommended that no further research on the possible hazards of aluminum in vaccines should be undertaken:

We found no evidence that aluminum salts in vaccines cause any serious or long-lasting adverse events. Despite a lack of good-quality evidence we do not recommend that any further research on this topic is undertaken.

“No obvious candidates to replace aluminum are available, so withdrawal for safety reasons would severely affect the immunogenicity and protective effect of some currently licensed vaccines and threaten immunization progammes worldwide.”[Highlight added]

This is a government/ industry position; one that regards safety as an impediment, rather than a primary objective. This attitude explains why independent vaccine research that is designed to examine whether there are vaccine safety hazards, is effectively blocked by interconnected institutional vaccine stakeholders who control mainstream vaccine “science” and channels of information. This has resulted in a lack of adequate data on the toxicology of vaccine ingredients.

“There is [sic] a concerning scarcity of data on toxicology and pharmacokinetics of these compounds. In spite of this, the notion that aluminum in vaccines is safe appears to be widely accepted. Experimental research, however, clearly shows that aluminum adjuvants have a potential to induce serious immunological disorders in humans. In particular, aluminum in adjuvant form carries a risk for autoimmunity, long-term brain inflammation and associated neurological complications and may thus have profound and widespread adverse health consequences.”[37] (Dr. Lucija Tomljenovic and Dr. Christopher Shaw (University of British Columbia)

Several recent examples [discussed below] show how independent studies demonstrating evidence of harm following vaccination are rejected for publication in influential (“high impact”) journals with wide readerships. In the case of research confirming aluminum’s toxicity in vaccines, editors used underhanded tactics to delay, withhold, retract, and attempt to suppress such articles – even when co-authored by an internationally recognized authority.

[A PubMed search “aluminum toxicity vaccines” retrieved 153 citations. Another search: “autoimmune/inflammatory syndrome induced by adjuvants” resulted in 66 citations. Appendix 11 of L’Affaire Wakefield is a partial bibliography that includes at least 6 scientific research reports that found aluminum to cause brain damage.]

The Brighton Collaboration Science Board of advisers are closely tied to vaccine manufacturers: for example, Dr. Daniel Salmon serves on Merck Vaccine Policy Advisory Board and is a strong advocate of compulsory vaccination. He is the lead author of Vaccine Refusal, Mandatory Immunization, and the Risks of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases, (NEJM, 2009).

Dr. Heidi Larson, of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Health Protection Research Unit in Immunisation at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) where she heads the Vaccine Confidence Project.

Dr. Larson is a member of the Vaccine Confidence Project (CSIS)[36] and Merck’s Vaccine Strategic Advisory Board; she is a consultant on vaccine confidence to GSK, and receives research funds from Wyeth and Berna; lecture fees from Sanofi and payments for testimony to the Department of Justice regarding several vaccine compensation cases. Dr. Larson serves on data and safety monitoring committees associated with Novartis and Merck.

She co-authored a Merck-commissioned report (2015)[37] for the Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS) in Washington DC. The report provides insight into the prevailing culture of industry-supported vaccine promoters who are absolutely determined to drive home their vaccine agenda at any cost. Reports of severe, chronic, generalized pain suffered by girls and young women are pouring into regulatory agencies,[38] but those regulatory agencies –e.g, CDC, EMA, JCVI, Brighton Collaboration, GAVCS, WHO – resolutely deny that a serious problem exists. In Japan, there were more than 2,000 HPV-vaccine adverse event reports of which 358 vaccine injuries were judged to be serious by 2014.

Independent research findings that report evidence of vaccine safety hazards are prevented from reaching the public. Such reports are suppressed, denigrated, and retracted for either unstated or spurious reasons;39 the scientists are pilloried.40 The recent case of an orchestrated assault allegedly led by the Chairman of the WHO – Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety against pathologist Sin Hang Lee, MD is an example.

WMP NOTE:  This concludes Part Three. Part Four of the seven-part series will be entitled: The HVP Debacle: How the Global Network of Government/Academic and Industry Stakeholders Suppress Information. 

Previously published articles: Sharov’s Introduction outlined her well-researched and documented belief that, “Public health officials and the medical profession have abrogated their professional, public, and human responsibility, by failing to honestly examine the iatrogenic harm caused by expansive, indiscriminate, and increasingly aggressive vaccination policies.” Part One focused on how the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the vaccine industry controlled vaccine safety assessments, the science of vaccines and the scientific and mass channels of information about vaccines. In Part Two Ms. Sharav interpreted the complex web of internal CDC documents, revealing how key CDC studies and CDC-commissioned studies were shaped by use of illegitimate methods.

More about the author: Vera Sharav is a Holocaust survivor and a fierce critic of the medical establishment. This article was originally published at www.ahrp.org. Stat news recently published an article about her and her work. 

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Source Article from http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/Collective-evolution/~3/a75Lg6zVMVs/

The Vaccine Program: Betrayal of Public Trust & Institutional Corruption—Part 2 of 7



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Note from the World Mercury Project Team:  Following is Part Two in a seven-part series of Vera Sharav’s in-depth exposé of the complex and widespread corruption that exists in the vaccination program. Her investigation has uncovered decades-long fraudulent activity that has permeated the vaccine industry. Sharav’s research is a must-read by those in our community because it explains the intricate groundwork that has led us to the debacle we are now living with – an epidemic of sick children.

You can read part one here.

Principal reports authored by scientists at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and CDC-sponsored reports published in the most influential medical journals are shown to be the product of scientific fraud and malfeasance by high-level CDC officials. The internal CDC documents include emails, memoranda, and transcripts of meetings and conference calls, are an irrefutable record revealing how key CDC studies and CDC-commissioned studies[12] were shaped by use of illegitimate methods, including data manipulation, selective inclusion, and deletion of data from the published reports.

To begin with, as a senior CDC scientist, Dr. Tom Verstraeten pointed out in an email that the Danish population studies – that compared Danish vs. US autism prevalence rates – used non-comparable populations:

  • By 1992, Sweden, Norway & Denmark had eliminated the use of Thimerosal from childhood vaccines, due to safety concerns; Japan followed suit; the U.S. did not.
  • Danish children were subjected to far fewer vaccines at different schedules, and exposure levels to the mercury preservative, thimerosal, was 75% lower than children in the U.S.
  • These significant disparate differences –by any standard – render the Danish epidemiological studies irrelevant to the US. Verstraeten scoffed at such studies as a comparison of “apples to pears”.

As will be documented below, mainstream academics accepted the published claimed findings of the CDC-sponsored Danish epidemiological studies without further examination. However, astute, skeptical, independent critics – both scientists and others – reviewed those pivotal studies in detail. These critics reported that the scientific integrity of those studies was undermined by statistical manipulation through which the MMR and thimerosal were exonerated as a causal contributor to autism.[13],[14]

  • Indeed, the Cochrane reviewers confirmed that the scientific integrity of the studies was undermined by: “bias in the selection of controls”; “lack of a properly constructed causal hypothesis”; “extensive under-counting of autism cases in the MMR group”; “unequal length of follow-up”; “missing 14% to 20% of original birth cohort”; “between 11% and 20% of adverse event data was missing”; and in CDC’s 2004 study (Pediatrics,) “more than a third of cases were excluded. (Cochrane MMR Reviews, 2005; 2012.)
  • Internal CDC correspondence, confirms that relevant findings documenting an increased risk of harm were deliberately omitted from the published and widely cited reports and even when scientists requested the full dataset of CDC’s own epidemiological study for independent analysis, CDC claimed that the data was “missing.”
  • Psychiatrist Poul Thorsen, MD, who was the principal Danish investigator of the Danish series of studies commissioned by CDC, failed to obtain ethics committee approval for key CDC-sponsored epidemiological studies – as is required under US and Danish law. Newly obtained internal CDC documents provide evidence of collusion and malfeasance by public health officials who attempted to cover-up those violations of legally mandated ethics committee review and approval.
  • A recently updated report by the World Mercury Project issued August 2017, includes many additional details documented in newly obtained CDC documents. The documents show that CDC officials took no action to evaluate the veracity of the data – even after they were informed in January 2009 about the missing CDC funds managed by the principal investigator.

“when CDC officials including Coleen Boyle, Marshalyn Yeargin-Allsopp, Joanne Wojcik, and Diana Schendel became aware in 2009, that Poul Thorsen failed to obtain legally required permission for the autism biological and genetic data projects, these CDC employees participated in a cover-up with the Danish grantees.”

  • CDC suppressed the findings of its large-scale 1999 study documenting a causal relationship between exposure to the vaccines containing Thimerosal (ethylmercury) and autism. The study found that exposure to Thimerosal during the first month of life increased the relative risk of autism 7-fold (7.6).
  • CDC also suppressed the original findings of another of its own studies that found a 340% (3.6) relative increased risk of autism for African American male babies following MMR vaccination in accordance with the CDC-recommended Childhood Vaccination Schedule.
  • CDC scientists worked in concert with CDC-commissioned Danish scientists to conceal the significantly reduced cases of autism in Denmark following the removal of Thimerosal in 1992.
  • The internal documents obtained by Robert Kennedy Jr and the World Mercury Project, provide evidence that high ranking CDC scientists committed massive fraud to protect CDC’s Childhood Vaccination Schedule to ensure high vaccination rates.
  • The other authoritative sources include the U.S. Grand Jury’s  criminal indictment of Dr. Poul Thorsen (2011) on 13 counts of fraud and 9 counts of money laundering. Thorsen was the principal CDC-commissioned psychiatrist in the Danish epidemiological studies. In addition to his failure to obtain ethics approval for studies published by The New England Journal of Medicine (2002), and by the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders (2010), Thorsen’s studies are shown to have been manipulated through fraudulent means. What’s more, he was criminally indicted by a US Grand Jury (2011) on 22-counts of fraud – including document forgeries – theft, embezzlement, and money laundering.
  • A detailed confidential report (2012) submitted by GlaxoSmithKline to the European Medicines Authority (EMA) documents the hazardous effects following vaccination with GSK’s 6-in-1 Infanrix Hexa vaccine. The report includes concealed sudden infant deaths.[17] [See Appendix 8]

The Challenges That Threatened Vaccine Orthodoxy & The Financial Interest Of Vaccine Stakeholders:

  • Dr. Wakefield lent validity to growing distrust in government assurances that all childhood vaccines and vaccination schedules are proven safe, by publicly expressing concerns about the safety of the MMR.
  • CDC scientists documented evidence of more than a 7- fold increased risk of autism for infants exposed to thimerosal. This finding had the potential of blowing the lid off the entire children’s vaccination schedule.
  • In 1999, the US Public Health Service and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) issued a joint statement calling for the elimination of Thimerosal from all vaccines in the US.[18]
  • In 2001, the Institute of Medicine (IOMreview[19] of the evidence, regarding whether vaccines laced with thimerosal posed a risk for children, concluded that the idea that thimerosal caused neurological disorders was “biologically plausible”. The committee made a series of recommendations, but CDC never implemented these recommendations:

“the use of thimerosal-free DTaP, Hib, and hepatitis B vaccines … case-control studies examining the potential link between neurodevelopmental disorders and thimerosal-containing vaccines… further analysis of neurodevelopmental outcomes… research on how children, including those diagnosed with neurodevelopmental disorders, metabolize and excrete metals, particularly mercury… research to identify a safe, effective, and inexpensive alternative to thimerosal”

CDC responded by stating the agency was “gravely troubled by the recommendation” of the PHS and the AAP, and ignored the IOM recommendations.[20] CDC dithered, and continued to recommend vaccines containing mercury, exposing millions of infants and children in the US to massive doses of thimerosal. CDC officials did so, with the endorsements of the FDA Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, and the Immunization Safety Committee of the Institute of Medicine. (See CDC Thimerosal Timeline 1999-2010)

In 2000, the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) authorized the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to set regulatory policy for the disposal of medications that are known environmental hazards. These are called hazardous pharmaceutical wastes. These include: “pharmaceutical with heavy metals, including the preservative thimerosal.

An EPA-sponsored biological study (2005)[21] by Dr. Thomas Burbacher and colleagues at the University of Rochester compared the biological (toxicokinetic) effect of consumed methylmercury to the effect of Hg (inorganic mercury) in vaccines containing thimerosal in infant monkeys. The seventeen monkeys assigned to the thimerosal group were vaccinated in accordance with the typical CDC recommended vaccination schedule. Those 17 infants retained “a much higher proportion of inorganic Hg in the brain (up to 71% vs. 10%) [compared to infants who ingested mercury]:

“A higher percentage of the total Hg in the brain was in the form of inorganic mercury for the thimerosal-exposed infants (34% vs 7%). There was a much higher proportion of inorganic Hg in the brain of thimerosal infants than MeHg infants (up to 71% vs. 10%).

Absolute inorganic Hg concentrations in the brains of the thimerosal-exposed infants were approximately twice that of the MeHg infants. Interestingly, the inorganic fraction in the kidneys of the same cohort of infants was also significantly higher following i.m. thimerosal than oral MeHg exposure (0.71±0.04 vs. 0.40±0.03). This suggests that the dealkylation of ethylmercury is much more extensive than that of MeHg.”

  • More than 165 studies have found Thimerosal to be harmful; 37 scientific published reports found a link between Thimerosal exposure and developmental disorders, including autism.[22]
  • More than 150 physicians and scientists who have published research demonstrating possible safety issues with vaccines (or ingredients in vaccines) are listed here.

Despite a body of scientific evidence, CDC continues to broadcast its reassuring, but untenable claim:

There is no evidence of harm caused by the low doses of thimerosal in vaccines, except for minor reactions like redness and swelling at the injection site.” Thimerosal contains ethylmercury, which is cleared from the human body more quickly than methylmercury, and is therefore less likely to cause any harm.” (CDC website)

CDC and its bevy of vaccine stakeholders ignore the scientific evidence and the fact that most of the consumed mercury in fish is excreted.[23] The documented risks of Thimerosal – especially for young children and unborn neonates – who are at increased risk of neurological brain damage/autism – led to the eventual removal of Thimerosal from childhood vaccines – although CDC never conceded that fact.

However, some influenza vaccines contain 250 times the mercury level that EPA uses to classify hazardous pharmaceutical waste.[24] What’s more, since 2002, CDC expanded its recommendation for the flu vaccine. In 2010, CDC recommended the flu shot for very young infants (6 and 7 months old), and an annual flu vaccine for everyone – including children and pregnant women.[25]

The authors of a recently published review, Thimerosal: Clinical, Epidemiologic and Biochemical Studies (2015)[26] point out, that despite the existence of approved, effective preservatives, Thimerosal continues to be used in some vaccines administered to infants, children, and pregnant women.

As a consequence of CDC recommendations, the cumulative exposure of US children to Thimerosal remains relatively high. In developing countries, the amount of Thimerosal in childhood vaccines has not been reduced and the harmful consequences are documented.[17]

How Vaccine Safety Assessments & the Channels of Information Re: Vaccine Safety Are Tightly Controlled By Stakeholders to Ensure High Utilization of Vaccines

The CDC Verstraeten study findings were concealed from all but a small circle of scientists. CDC officials conspired to overturn the evidence of the thimerosal-autism risk documented by its own scientists.[27]

  • CDC commissioned an IOM review to exonerate thimerosal and the MMR;
  • CDC outsourced a series of dubious (incompatible) epidemiological studies that were designed to exonerate thimerosal as a causal link to autism;
  • CDC initiated  multiple international collaborative consortia  to control  the assessment standards of vaccine safety; to set the agenda for vaccine safety research, and to control the content of information about vaccine safety.

Evidence of Institutional Corruption at the Institute of Medicine

A transcript of a January 2001 closed-door meeting of the IOM Immunization Safety Review Committee (obtained in 2011 during Court proceedings)[28] records the discussion centered on the content of a CDC draft report before the IOM committee ever examined the evidence. The chair of the committee, Dr. Marie McCormick, of the Harvard School of Public Health, and IOM scholar, Dr. Kathleen Stratton, the study director, specified to committee members what conclusions they were expected to sign off on – no matter what the evidence shows:

CDC wants us to declare [sic] these things are pretty safe on a population basis.” [p33] “We are not ever going to come down that [autism] is a true side effect.”


Dr. Kathleen Stratton:  “The point of no return, the line we will not cross in public policy is to pull the vaccine, [or] change the schedule. We could say it is time to revisit this, but we would never recommend that level.   Even recommending research is recommendations for policy. We wouldn’t say compensate, we wouldn’t  say pull the vaccine, we wouldn’t stop the program.”  [p74]

The influential IOM committee backed away from its 2001 recommendations and delivered the report that CDC had dictated and stressed that raising questions about the safety of vaccines poses the danger of rejection of vaccines:

The committee concludes that the body of epidemiological evidence favors rejection of a causal relationship between the MMR vaccine and autism. The committee also concludes that the body of epidemiological evidence favors rejection of a causal relationship between thimerosal-containing vaccines and autism…

“Using an unsubstantiated hypothesis to question the safety of vaccination and the ethical behavior of those governmental agencies and scientists who advocate for vaccination could lead to widespread rejection of vaccines… ”  Immunization Safety Review: Vaccines and Autism (2004)

The “body of evidence” that the IOM review relied on was 5 CDC-funded fatally flawed epidemiological studies; several of these were found to be fraudulent. [29]  Another study relied on the UK General Practice Research Database (GPRD) whose reliability is in doubt.[30]

All of these studies reiterated the uniform, pre-determined conclusion:

“there was no evidence that thimerosal exposure via DTP/DT vaccines causes neurodevelopmental disorders.” The IOM reviewers failed even to consider FDA’s risk assessment: An Assessment of Thimerosal Use in Childhood Vaccines  (2001) which cautioned:

“some infants may be exposed to cumulative levels of mercury during the first 6 months of life that exceed EPA recommendations. Exposure of infants to mercury in vaccines can be reduced or eliminated by using products formulated without thimerosal as a preservative.”

Furthermore, the IOM committee refused to review pre-publication drafts of rigorous biological studies.[31] These included scientists from Columbia University (Molecular Psychiatry, 2004); University of Arkansas (NeuroToxicology, 2005); Northeastern University (Molecular Psychiatry, 2004); a U.S. epidemiological study by Johns Hopkins University (Pediatrics, 2005); Harvard University (Neuroscientist, 2005); and the University of Washington (Environmental Health Perspectives, 2005).

The committee rushed to issue its report exonerating Thimerosal. The IOM report lent validity to irrelevant epidemiologic studies, government vaccination policies, and provided the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP) with the rationale against compensation for autism. The conclusions reached by the IOM Committee were pre-determined, as were the studies upon which it relied. The committee delivered the findings that it was commissioned and paid to deliver.

This dishonest review by the IOM panel demonstrates the lack scientific integrity of a report issued by the Institute of Medicine, further validating public distrust of  “authoritative” government and quasi-government medical institutions. Nevertheless, the influence of this flawed report extends far and wide.

Dr. Robert Chen, Chief of Vaccine Safety for CDC’s National Immunization Program (NIP) initiated the Brighton Collaboration.[32] It was launched in 2000, by members of the Cochrane Collaboration:  Tom Jefferson, Harald Heijbel, Ulrich Heininger, Elisabeth Loupi, with funding obtained from the CDC and the WHO.

In an editorial in the BMJ Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health Online (June 2000), Dr. Jefferson urged the UK government to launch a computerized vaccine exposure and outcome database such as the one the US CDC maintains (i.e., Vaccine Safety Datalink, VSD) in order to rapidly counteract public concern.

“Since the publication of the Wakefield study on 28 February 1998, public concern fueled by extensive media coverage caused a steady decline in MMR coverage in parts of the United Kingdom, with a subsequent risk of a decline in herd immunity and resurgence in morbidity.”

“As usual with vaccine “scare stories,” there was a delay between publication of the initial case series and that of population-based causal assessment study. During this time, declining coverage took place.”

“The impact on parents of a perceived causal link with a chronic disease that could threaten the life and wellbeing of their children is understandably great. Inevitably, in a proportion of cases the worry and emotion spills over into a threat of legal action against governments, manufacturers or individuals. This has the effect of taking the matter outside the scientific and healthcare arena and into the realm of the judiciary.” [33]

It would appear that Dr. Jefferson was unaware of the Verstraeten Vaccine Safety Datalink population-based study:

  • The objective of that singular CDC study was to determine whether the adjuvant thimerosal contained in most childhood vaccines at the time, posed a risk of harm to infants.
  • CDC researchers found a 7-fold increased risk of autism caused by exposure to thimerosal, a risk which CDC has continued to conceal from the public while proclaiming that no evidence of an autism risk exists.
  • The causal link that “just won’t go away”, was more than a perception; it was science-based evidence.

WMP NOTE:  This concludes Part Two. Part Three of the Seven-Part series is entitled: Gaining Control of Vaccine-Related Information: Establishing an Infrastructure.  Previously published articles: Sharov’s Introduction outlined her well-researched and documented belief that, “Public health officials and the medical profession have abrogated their professional, public, and human responsibility, by failing to honestly examine the iatrogenic harm caused by expansive, indiscriminate, and increasingly aggressive vaccination policies.” Part Onefocused on how the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the vaccine industry controlled vaccine safety assessments, controlled the science of vaccines and controlled the scientific and mass channels of information about vaccines.

More about the author: Vera Sharav is a Holocaust survivor and a fierce critic of the medical establishment. This article was originally published at www.ahrp.org. Stat news recently published an article about her and her work. 

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The Vaccine Program: Betrayal of Public Trust & Institutional Corruption – Part 1 of 7



Note from the World Mercury Project Team:  Following is Part One in a seven-part series of Vera Sharav’s in-depth exposé of the complex and widespread corruption that exists in the vaccination program. Her investigation has uncovered decades-long fraudulent activity that has permeated the vaccine industry. Sharav’s research is a must-read by those in our community because it explains the intricate groundwork that has led us to the debacle we are now living with – an epidemic of sick children.

The exponential increase in the autism / autism spectrum prevalence rate since 1985 (1 in 2,500) to 2016 (1 in 45) is evidence of an epidemic, not, as the deniers will have it, “an optical illusion” or “a statistical mirage

“today a million and more Americans, almost all under thirty, have been formally diagnosed with autism…Most with an autism diagnosis will never [lead normal lives] or be responsible for their health and welfare. Both the increase and the burden it imposes are widely recognized by thousands of parents and frontline professionals such as nurses and teachers. Yet some of the most prominent and powerful people in medicine, the media, and government deny it.” [DENIAL: How Refusing to Face the Facts about Our Autism Epidemic Hurts Children, Families, and Our Future, Mark Blaxil and Dan Olmsted (2017)]

Are children’s rights to a normal life being sacrificed as collateral damage to protect high utilization of vaccines?

The focus of this appendix is how the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the vaccine industry control vaccine safety assessments, control the science of vaccines and control the scientific and mass channels of information about vaccines. These primary stakeholders gained control by establishing an elaborate web of collaborating institutional partnerships which they fund. The collaborating institutional stakeholders include:

  • The American Academy of Pediatrics,
  • The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunization (JCVI, UK),
  • The World Health Organization,
  • WHO-Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety (GACVS),
  • The European Medicines Agency (EMA),
  • The European Centre for Disease Prevention & Control (ECDPC),
  • The Brighton Collaboration and the Brighton Collaboration Foundation,
  • The Cochrane Collaboration,
  • The Institute of Medicine,
  • The Council for International Organizations of Medical Sciences (CIOMS),
  • The Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI) which is bankrolled by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation,
  • World Bank and others.

Numerous additional industry front groups are popping up on social media to spread vaccine propaganda, such as the European Health Parliament (EHP, situated in Brussels, created in 2017). EHP is bankrolled by Johnson and Johnson and is affiliated with Google, Politico and others. [Appendix 10 is being updated. It will publish shortly.]

All of these institutions became de facto stakeholders in promoting vaccination policies while presenting themselves as independent authoritative sources of information about vaccine safety.

Through this elaborate network of collaborative partnerships, industry gained global control of vaccine safety assessments – which are applied as the single standard, used mostly to rule out a causal relationshipbetween vaccination and serious adverse events following vaccination. These centrally controlled assessments are applied indiscriminately in all cases, disregarding individual human susceptibility factors.

One of the intended features of these collaborating partnerships is to camouflage the identity of the funding source for vaccine research and professed independent reviews of vaccine research.  Medical journals, as the editor-in-chief of The Lancet, Dr. Richard Horton acknowledged, “devolved into information laundering operations for the pharmaceutical industry.”  Indeed, the BMJ (British Medical Journal) entered into undisclosed partnership agreements with both major vaccine manufacturers. In 2008, BMJ and Merck entered into partnership and in 2016, BMJ and GlaxoSmithKline formed a partnership as well. Additionally, vaccine stakeholders control the vast channels of propaganda – including Google, which has formed a partnership with GlaxoSmithKline.

The financial interest of these collaborating partnerships conflicts with the tenets of medical ethics and scientific integrity – such as transparency and independent assessment of the data. The consequences of these ill-suited partnerships are demonstrated by evidence of corrupt vaccine safety assessments; evidence of harm following vaccination is either concealed or defined as non-related; journal publications are corrupted by fraudulent reports, and honest scientific findings are suppressed. The entire web of vaccine stakeholder- collaborations is geared toward issuing uniform vaccine safety pronouncements that promote vaccination policies crafted to ensure high vaccination rates, translating to ever higher profit margins.

Much of the evidence is documented in thousands of internal CDC documents (some were obtained in 2011);[1] additional CDC internal documents were obtained in July 2017.[2] The evidence is also documented in transcripts of closed-door meetings, such as the Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) at Simpsonwood (2000); the Institute of Medicine  Committee on Immunization Safety Review (2001); and the UK Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI, 1990). These documents were obtained under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Evidence was also gathered in the course of a criminal investigation of Dr. Poul Thorsen by the U.S. Inspector General, Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

Background:

What Did CDC Officials Know About Thimerosal; When Did They Know It, & What Did They Do About It?

In 1974, the FDA convened a panel of experts to conduct a comprehensive review of the safety and effectiveness of over-the-counter medicines. One facet of the review was OTC drugs that contained mercury whose function was to kill bacteria to prevent infection. In 1980, the Advisory Review Panel submitted its report to the FDA, having reviewed 18 products containing mercury. It found the products either unsafe or ineffective. The report cited several studies demonstrating human hypersensitivity to thimerosal:

mercury compounds as a class are of dubious value for anti-microbial use. Mercury inhibits the growth of bacteria, but does not act swiftly to kill them.”

The Panel concludes that thimerosal is not safe for OTC topical use because of its potential for cell damage if applied to broken skin, and its allergy potential. It is not effective as a topical antimicrobial because its bacteriostatic action can be reversed.”[4]

After the determination by the FDA advisory committee, Eli Lilly chose to cease production of Thimerosal-containing products. Despite the evidence, Thimerosal continued to be added to vaccines. In 1990, Professor Hans Wigzell, Rector of the Karolinska Institute, Sweden, and member Nobel Committee for Physiology or Medicine, wrote “Difficult to Substitute Mercury as a Preservative in Bacterial Vaccines”, in which he recommended that:

“a study [be conducted] to show if there is a difference in general toxicity when uptake of mercury is from the stomach-intestines or after injections…This should be studied in relation to the tremendous large number of subjects vaccinated with preparations containing thimerosal sodium; Our goal is to develop, as soon as possible, vaccines completely free of mercury.”[5]

In 1991, Dr. Maurice Hilleman, an internationally renowned Merck vaccinologist, wrote a memo to the president of Merck’s vaccine division stating:

“6-month-old children who received their shots on schedule would get a mercury dose up to 87 times higher than guidelines for the maximum daily consumption of mercury from fish. When viewed in this way, the mercury load appears rather large. The key issue is whether thimerosal, in the amount given with the vaccine, does or does not constitute a safety hazard. However, perception of hazard may be equally important.” [6]

The FDA delayed issuing its final rule on thimerosal until 1998, stating: “safety and effectiveness have not been established for the ingredients (mercury based preservatives)… manufacturers have not submitted the necessary data in response to earlier opportunities.”[7]The rule, however, applied only to OTC products.

In 1991, Dr. Peter Aaby, Director of the Bandim Health Project, a demographic surveillance system (in Guinea-Bissau, West Africa), which is affiliated with the Statens Serum Institute, identified non-specific adverse vaccine effects which go beyond the specific protective effects of the targeted disease. He noted that these non-specific effects can be beneficial or harmful. Dr. Aaby has conducted a series of comparative “natural studies” of vaccinated and unvaccinated children in high-mortality regions in rural Africa, that consistently confirmed that:

Though a vaccine protects children against the target disease it may simultaneously increase susceptibility to unrelated infections.”[8]

The First Large-Scale Scientifically Sound CDC Epidemiological Study

The 1999 CDC study sought to determine the relative risk for infants following exposure to thimerosal-containing childhood vaccines was conducted by Dr. Thomas Verstraeten and three CDC colleagues who examined the evidence documented in CDC’s Vaccine Safety Datalink (VSD). They analyzed the medical records of 400,000 infants born between 1991 and 1997 that were maintained by four HMOs and assessed the risk of autism for the children at different ages.

This was a scientifically solid study; it provided scientific documentation that: exposure to thimerosal during the first month of life increased the relative risk of autism by 7.6 i.e., 760%.

The VSD data revealed additional risks as well: 1.8 increased relative risk for a neurodevelopmental disorder; 2.1 relative risk for speech disorder; and 5-fold increased relative risk for a nonorganic sleep disorder. The evidence documents that infants exposed to vaccines laced with thimerosal during the first month of life are at an alarmingly high increased risk of serious harm.

In December 1999, Dr. Verstraeten sent an email to his co-authors and CDC colleagues, Dr. Robert Davis and Dr. Frank DeStefano; the subject line was “it just won’t go away”. The email attachments included four tables with relative risk data and the Abstract of their study findings, that he was submitting for a presentation, at the high level (by invitation only) meeting, convened by CDC’s Epidemic Intelligence Service, at Simpsonwood Retreat Center in Georgia (2000).[9]

The title of their study: Increased Risk Of Developmental Neurologic Impairment After High Exposure To Thimerosal-Containing Vaccine In First Month Of Life.

The meeting was chaired by Richard Johnston, M.D., an immunologist and pediatrician (University of Colorado) who stated:

The data on its toxicity (shows) it can cause neurologic and renal toxicity, including death. We learned [sic] a number of important things about aluminum, and I think they also are important in our considerations today.”

“Aluminum salts are important in the formulating process of vaccines, both in antigen stabilization and absorption of endotoxin. Aluminum and mercury are often simultaneously administered to infants, both at the same site and at different sites.”

“However [sic] there is absolutely no data, including animal data, about the potential for synergy, additively or antagonism, all of which can occur in binary metal mixtures that relate and allow us to draw any conclusions from the simultaneous exposure to these two salts in vaccines…” [p. 19-20]

Dr. Verstraeten began his presentation by stating: “what I will present to you is the study that nobody thought we should do.” The study categorized the cumulative effect of thimerosal-containing vaccines administered to infants after one month of life and assessed the subsequent risk of degenerative and developmental neurologic disorders, and renal disorders before the age of six. Dr. Verstraeten stated that ALL of these relative risks were statistically significant.

And he noted that: “mercury at one month of age is not the same as mercury at three months, at 12 months, prenatal mercury, later mercury. There is a whole range of plausible outcomes from mercury.” When asked about the risk of aluminum, he stated: “the results were almost identical to ethylmercury because the amount of aluminum goes along almost exactly with the mercury one.”

Following the presentation, Dr. Roger Bernier (Associate Director for Science NIP) stated: “We have asked you to keep this information confidential….Consider this embargoed information.”[p. 113]

It is clear from the EIS transcript that the response to Dr. Verstraeten’s research findings differed between pediatricians, who were genuinely concerned about the hazards of both Thimerosal and aluminum, whereas officials of government and non-government organizations (NGOs, that are dependent on government and industry support, such as the World Health Organization), focused on the threat to vaccination policy and the risk of litigation were intent on burying the data and maintaining secrecy about the findings.

Pediatricians focused on the risks, public health: Dr. William Weil, represented the American Academy of Pediatricians (AAP) stated:

moving from one month or one day of birth to six months of birth changes enormously the potential for toxicity. There are just a host of neurodevelopmental data that would suggest that we’ve got a serious problem. the potential for aluminum and central nervous system toxicity was established by dialysis data. To think there isn’t some possible problem here is unreal.”[p.24]

Although the data presents a number of uncertainties, there is adequate consistency, biological plausibility, a lack of relationship with phenomenon not expected to be related, and a potential causal role that is as good as any other hypothesized etiology of explanation of the noted associations.

In addition, the possibility that the associations could be causal has major significance for public and professional acceptance of Thimerosal containing vaccines. I think that is a critical issue. Finally, lack of further study would be horrendous grist for the anti-vaccination bill. That’s why we need to go on, and urgently I would add.” [pg. 187 & 188]

The number of dose related relationships are linear and statistically significant. You can play with this all you want. They are linear. They are statistically significant.” [p.207]

[Dr. Weil may well have been informed by the following research report: Aluminum Neurotoxicity in Preterm Infants Receiving Intravenous-Feeding Solutions in the NEJM(1997) whose authors concluded: “In preterm infants, prolonged intravenous feeding with solutions containing aluminum is associated with impaired neurologic development.” More on aluminum vaccine adjuvants below.]

Dr. Johnson: “This association leads me to favor a recommendation that infants up to two years old not be immunized with Thimerosal-containing vaccines if suitable alternative preparations are available… I do not want [my] grandson to get a Thimerosal containing vaccine until we know better what is going on.” [p. 198]

Dr. Robert Brent [a Scientific Adviser to an industry front-group] focused entirely on protecting corporations from lawsuits:

The medical/legal findings in this study, causal or not, are horrendous and therefore, it is important that the suggested epidemiological, pharmacokinetic, and animal studies be performed. If an allegation was made that a child’s neurobehavioral findings were caused by Thimerosal containing vaccines, you could readily find junk scientist who would support the claim with “a reasonable degree of certainty”.

But you will not find a scientist with any integrity who would say the reverse with the data that is available. And that is true. So we are in a bad position from the standpoint of defending any lawsuits if they were initiated and I am concerned.” [pg. 229, emphasis added]

*[Dr. Brent was a member of the Board of Trustees of the American Council on Science and Health (ACSH) a food and chemical industry front group which the Center for Science in the Public Interest described as, “Voodoo Science, Twisted Consumerism”[10]]

Dr. John Clements, who represented the WHO at the EIS conference, expressed alarm about the direction of the research, which he viewed as posing a threat to vaccination uptake if the information reaches the public:

I am really concerned that we have taken off like a boat going down one arm of the mangrove swamp at high speed, when in fact there was not enough discussion really early on about which way the boat should go at all. And I really [don’t] want to risk offending everyone in the room by saying that perhaps this study should not have been done at all, because the outcome of it could have, to some extent, been predicted…, and we have all reached this point now where we are left hanging, even though I hear the majority of consultants say to the Board that they are not convinced there is a causality direct link between thimerosal and various neurological outcomes. I know how we handle it from here is extremely problematic.” [Emphasis added]

“…even if this committee decides that there is no association and that information gets out, the work that has been done and through the freedom of information that will be taken by others and will be used in ways beyond the control of this group. And I am very concerned about that as I suspect it already too late to do anything regardless of any professional body and what they say.”

My mandate as I sit here in this group is to make sure at the end of the day that 100,000,000 are immunized with DTP, Hepatitis B and if possible Hib, this year, next year and for many years to come, and that will have to be with Thimerosal containing vaccines unless a miracle occurs and an alternative is found quickly and is tried and found to be safe. “ [emphasis added]

“I am very concerned that this has gotten this far, and that having got this far, how you present in a concerted voice the information to the ACIP [Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices] in a way they will be able to handle it and not get exposed to the traps which are out there in public relations.

My message would be that any other study, and I like the study that has just been described here very much. I think it makes a lot of sense, but it has to be thought through. What are the potential outcomes and how will you handle it? How will it be presented to a public and a media… I wonder how on earth you are going to handle it from here.“ [p. 247—249]

Other comments from those present include:

“We could exclude the lowest exposure children from the database”; “We could remove children that got the highest exposure levels since they represented an unusually high percentage of the [adverse] outcomes”; “We can push and pull this data any way we want to get the results we want;” “We could have predicted the outcomes.” 

CDC’s Dr. Bernier reminded everyone: “consider this embargoed information…and very highly protected information.

The concerns expressed at this Epidemic Intelligence Service meeting, by Dr. Clements and other public officials and industry representatives who asserted their determination to conceal the thimerosal evidence from the public, has been the policy of CDC and an international network. However, concealing the evidence does not eradicate the evidence. A compendium of 80 peer-reviewed, published studies found evidence of a link between thimerosal and neurological disorders, including autism. A recent Review paper (April 2017) documents that the continued use of thimerosal in underdeveloped countries provides evidence of its harmful impact.[11] 

WMP NOTE:  This concludes Part One. Part Two of the Seven-Part series will be entitled: Public Trust of Government Pronouncements Regarding Vaccine Safety is Validated By Evidence of Deception and Corrupt Practices.  Sharov’s Introduction outlines her well-researched and documented belief that, “Public health officials and the medical profession have abrogated their professional, public, and human responsibility, by failing to honestly examine the iatrogenic harm caused by expansive, indiscriminate, and increasingly aggressive vaccination policies.” 

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