Monday, January 30, 2017

"Vaccines are magical and not at all broken"

Most of my time in the car I am listening to either podcasts or talk radio - they are God's gifts to commuters. In my morning commute I listen to the previous night's broadcast of the Steve Deace show. He discusses politics with a Christian, biblical worldview - it has become one of my favorites as the host and regular team have a great sense of humor and penchant for snark. 

They are lovers of truth and as such are aware of the difference between "SCIENCE!" (the idol) and real, genuine science whose purpose is discovering information that is both factual and truthful (truth being far more than mere facts - but facts are absolutely part of truth). As a christian I know that there is not one element of truth that does not flow first and foremost from Jesus Christ - He is the source of all truth.  

One of the regular team is Todd Erzen (@DeaceOnline) and the title of this particular post is a riff off of a snarky, scathingly sarcastic quip he says about journalism, which is his professional background ("Journalism is magical and not at all broken"). I linked to a piece he wrote "Villany, Virtue, and Vaccination" on a previous post (Feb 3, 2015) - the link to that piece is now broken, I will post an update if/when I can get a functioning link. 

The thought that "vaccines are magical and not at all broken" or that vaccines are "safe and effective" would fall within the perview of the statement that a lie repeated often enough is believed to be true (attributed to Goebbels, Williams James, Hitler and/or Lenin).

This past Friday (Jan 28, 2017) he (Erzen) brought up the issue of vaccines (starting at the 1hr:14min mark). It was in the context of "The Deace Group", a take-off of "The McLaughlin Group" where they are making predictions for the coming year. Mr. Erzen is not very optimistic of the odds that the issue of vaccination will get the hearing it deserves regardless of President Trump's views on it - and he has expressed skepticism regarding the flu vaccine in particular and concern that vaccines may be contributing to autism as well. Erzen stated he was glad that Trump is looking into it (as am I). 

At one point (1hr:27min mark) the show's producer,  Aaron McIntire (@DeaceProducer) poses the question "If you could head up any scientific study, what would it be?" - Erzen re-visits the issue of vaccines stating he would do a comprehensive study on the use of vaccination. At this point the Aaron expresses an interest in following up with Erzen for a more in depth discussion about the issue of vaccines. I hope they have this conversation. 
It is clear Erzen's interest in and knowledge of vaccination is not superficial but he does 
not disclose what motivates his interest in vaccines.

I hope Todd Erzen's comments about vaccines caused a few more people to have a greater curiosity about this issue and will move them to give them a much deeper examination. Even better I hope this evaluation will lead more to demand better science (not "SCIENCE!") from our public health officials and even more importantly greater freedom in medical decision making around vaccination. 

Personally, I would refer to greater freedom in the use of vaccines as a return to normalcy - the standard is freedom to decide what, if anything, is injected into your body. Our current state of affairs is a serious, and dangerous deviation from what should be the norm - being able to chose a medical intervention, or refuse it, without consequence to any other facet of your life.  

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Vaccine SAFETY Commission - it's not just about autism!

President Trump has floated the idea of a federal commission to study the safety of vaccines. Those who think vaccines are safe and effective should be embracing this idea - because they are so convinced the science is on their side. What is there to hide? What could there be to dread about any inquiry? 

In discussing vaccine safety the discussion always seems to go to autism. That's understandable since it is the most common and obvious "coincidence" associated with vaccines. 

But if this commission actually comes to fruition I hope they don't get sidetracked into only considering autism. That would be a big, juicy black hole and vaccine proponents can only hope that is what ends up happening. 

Vaccine safety is not just about autism. 

What does need to happen is a long, close up look (think high colonic) at the CDC. 
  - This needs to start with a subpeona issued to Dr. Bill Thompson. 
  - Then they can move on to examining the issue of conflict of interest in the  
    ACIP (Advisory  Committee on Immunization Practices - it is nested within the CDC). 
  - Perhaps they would begin extradition proceedings on Poul Thorson (you know, the 
    former CDC "researcher" who is on the FBI's most wanted list for fraud). 
  - Hopefully they will not overlook the Merck whistleblower case (still ongoing). 

RFK Jr has lots of name recognition due to his high profile family and his own work on environmental issues. I think it would be better to appoint someone else, as RFK Jr is known to be concerned about mercury in the environment, mostly because of coal, but mercury in vaccines (and yes, it is still in vaccines, though at lower amounts than before) could well become yet another rabbit-hole. 

Vaccine safety is not just about mercury or thimerosal. 

Autism and mercury can function as shiny objects, as "squirrels" that serve to distract from other issues that are at least as important (some of which I have listed above) and should not be overlooked. 

Here are some others: 
 - Personal/medical freedom (and lack thereof in regards to vaccination)
 - Informed Consent (and lack thereof in regards to vaccination)
 - Huge gaping holes in science around vaccination (ie: the recommended 
   schedule has never been tested - for children or adults - and this schedule 
   does nothing but grow!)
 - The use of pseudo-science with vaccines testing (using other vaccines as 
   a faux-placebo rather than a **real** placebo like saline). 
 - The missing science on vaccinations: multiple studies comparing the 
   short and long term health outcomes of vaccinated and non-vaccinated 
   people (with the definition of non-vaccinated meaning having never received
   any vaccines at all). 
 - Vaccines and our military (Gulf War Syndrome)

Apparently Congress is not too enthusiastic about this idea. I wonder if that might be related to the pharmaceutical lobby and the cash they dole out? 

I'll be surprised if this comes to fruition. I'll be even more surprised if it does more than issue a perfunctory report and close up shop. We deserve so much better from our representatives. Let us hope a vaccine SAFETY commission has the power of law to force the law-makers to stop crafting laws and regulations that crush freedom. Let us hope a vaccine SAFETY commission will bring more transparency and act as a catalyst for better, stronger science that will provide the information we need to make medical decisions with greater confidence. Let us hope they conclude no one is obligated to take part in a medical intervention if they do not want to - that when an individual sacrifices themselves for others it must be voluntary, not coerced or manipulated.
Please contact President Trump and encourage him to follow through on this. The Whitehouse comment line is 202.456.1111 
Please contact your Congressional Representative and Senators and ask them to support this. The Senate Switchboard is 202.224.3121 
The House of Representative Switchboard is 202.225.3121


Saturday, January 21, 2017

I took my cat to the vet today ... no aluminum in his vaccine!

I took my cat to the vet today (and let me give a shout out to North DeKalb Vet Clinic!) 

It was time for his yearly exam, and of course, as required by law, rabies vaccine. I discussed with his vet how I would prefer to opt out by testing his antibody level, but sadly, this is not allowed in DeKalb County, GA. Even if it were an option it is (for me) prohibitively expensive, as it costs about $400 to get the antibody level. 

However, my cat's vet uses Purevax as the rabies vaccine. He made a point of saying it is not adjuvanated with aluminum. And he was emphatic that he REFUSES to use any vaccine with aluminum in it - because of the side effects caused by the aluminum (ie: tumors at the injection site). 

Yet in vaccines for humans there are multiple vaccines with aluminum and not a care in the world that there might be undesired side effects (well, vaccines are safe and effective after all!) - but if a person is in a hospital receiving IV fluid or medication, or on hyperalimentation (being fed through an intravenous port) - tracking how much aluminum they are receiving and limiting it is all too important.  

If the FDA says it is not safe to inject >25mcg (25 micrograms) of aluminum/day (for an infant), then why would it be safe to inject 500mcg (.5 milligrams) into a newborn on the day of birth (the Hepatitis B vaccine) - especially if this newborn's mother does not have Hepatitis B?! 

In the bizarro world of human vaccines, no ingredient is unsafe, no amount is too much. But we have to protect our animals from the very same substances? 

None of the above is rational, and we deserve far better. If we can make vaccines better and safer for our animals I am confident we can do the same for humans. The best scenario is one in which the product is safer, and also effective - and where people can determine for themselves whether they will or will not use the product. 

Sunday, January 08, 2017

I'm sorry Dr. Neides apologized

Dr. Neides, who is associated with the Cleveland Clinic, recently published an editorial calling for safer vaccines. From the reaction you would have thought he had advocated filling them with neurotoxins and injecting them into as many people as possible, as frequently as possible! 

Quite predictably he is deep in the processes of being "Wakefielded" (the 21rst century update to being "Semmelweissed"). All the right people and institutions have puffed out their chests and issued the all too appropriate condemnations and self-righteous proclamations. The Cleveland Clinic has promised to sanction him in some sort of way (though he did not speak on their behalf nor did he do this on their time or while they were compensating him for his work). He has tried to quell the storm by issuing an apology, though it is not a retraction of what he wrote. 

He is being hammered for wanting better, safer, medicine (ie: vaccines). He dared touch The Precious and he is being made to care. The Precious needs to be thrown back into the fires of Mordor. And those who are beating their chests because of what he wrote are the Smeegals of medicine. 

His column begins with him acknowledging that he followed the CDC's recommendation to get a flu vaccine, and he has a history of being on the record as for vaccination. But he attempted to stray from the plantation - and this will not be allowed! He is in the process of being whipped. 

What is truly outrageous is that calling for an improvement in a product that is so widely used actually sparked outrage! The reaction by establishment medicine simply fuels the increasingly widespread skepticism toward vaccination. The response by mainstream medicine and academic medicine is not one of transparency but of a witch-hunt. This does not increase trust, it further destroys it. 

He was right to question the possible effects of many of the ingredients of vaccines. We all should. 

Here are some other reasons trust is being eroded: 
CDC Whistleblower 
Merck whistleblowers 
SPIDER (within the CDC) 
Poul Thorson (on the FBI's most wanted list) 
All manner of conflict of interest 
Dismissal of observed adverse events following vaccination 
Manipulative and coercive policies mandating vaccination 

And those advocating vaccination have the temerity to harange someone (who is actually on their team) just for suggesting that perhaps there is a need for some quality control?! 
The only argument they are making is one from emotion - and when your opponent resorts to ad hominen attack they are shooting blanks (though they surely still sting). 

He dared to step outside the paradigm - this is what scientists do. And because they do that important discoveries are made and facts discovered and knowledge advanced. I hope this causes him to think even more deeply about this issue and look into it furhter. Hopefully he will see Vaxxed (if he hasn't already). He has absolutely nothing to apologize for. I pray what he has done will prick consciences and awaken more from the dull stupor of mediocraty that passes for evidenced based medicine these days. 

Saturday, January 07, 2017

Cracked vaccine science - measles edition

If you happen to listen to NPR's Morning Edition (I generally don't - I found this article as it came through my Facebook feed as a post by a friend) you may have heard this puff piece: 

Here's a link to the study the NPR spot is referring to:

It is paywalled (I have no problem with this - it is the product of a private company) so my comments are based on how it is described in the NPR article. I have not read the study. 

#1 - "results" are extrapolated based on computer modeling ... even for SCIENCE (ie: the idol) this is weak sauce.

#2 - "results" are also attributed to the healthy user effect (ahem, frequently posited as why the flu vaccine "works"! Ha!!) What's all the more bizarre is they attribute this even to poor children in less developed nations (I would say poverty, especially of the degree experienced in less developed nations is a reasonable marker for poor nutritional status and may also serve as a marker for not having easy access to potable water or basic sanitation, including management of human waste - how could people living in these types of conditions be considered "healthy users"?). They equate an observation from developed nations as also occurring in less developed nations - this isn't science, it is assumption.

#3 - They acknowledge their analysis/conclusions is nothing more than a theory ... in order to test it there would have to be some actual science - you know, take two similar groups, give one the vaccine and the other a true placebo (as opposed to the fake placebo that is ordinarily used in vaccine research these days) and compare the results. Is this "immune amnesia" actually seen in the group that did not get the vaccine (and also got spontaneous/natural/wild measles)? Don't hold your breath for this to happen. 
#4 -  The article fails to acknowledge that vaccination is a medical intervention with known risks. 
It is unknown what the actual, true risk/benefit ratio is for vaccination in general let alone for a specific disease. In order to know the risk/benefit ratio there would need to be an experiment called a double-blind (those giving the intervention would not know if the participant was receiving the vaccine or a placebo) randomized controlled trial (the intervention group and the comparison group would be otherwise similar, and who got the intervention or who got the placebo would be randomized). 
Please note - in order for this to generate meaningful results the placebo would have to be an actual placebo - in other words, the substance of the placebo would need to be biologically inert. Most vaccine research does not use a placebo, but rather a "nocebo" or a fake placebo, usually testing one vaccine against another or using the excipient of a vaccine (the solution which carries the antigen of the infection but also has all of the other ingredients of the vaccine and many of the other ingredients are also biologically active, like adjuvants such as aluminum). 

In not acknowledging that vaccination also carries risks NPR does the reading/listening public a great disservice. 

#5 - The authors of the study (and the epidemiologist, William Moss, the article cites) posit the theory that infection with measles (as a spontaneous infection, or "wild" measles) causes an immunomodulation that is a type of immune amnesia. They inaccurately describe the results as "compelling evidence" of measles effect upon the immune system. What isn't theoretical but is known is that recovering from measles confers lifelong immunity to it (those born prior to 1957 are assumed to be immune and the vaccine is not "indicated" for this group of people). However, any risk reduction conferred by a vaccine is known to be temporary (at best) requiring repeated vaccination throughout life in order to suppress symptoms of disease (though the vaccinated can harbor and spread disease to others). 
Measles does effect the immune system for more than two or three years - it effects it for life (in a good way) - whether or not it effects the immune system in an undesirable way (by causing an type of amnesia to other infections) is completely unknown - but why would recovery from measles provide lifelong immunity to measles while wiping out immunity to other infections? Lifelong immunity is a desirable form of "immunomodulation". The article would have been more accurate if it had acknowledged this fact.
#6 -  Vaccines are known "immunomodulators" of the worst kind - they are implicated in auto-immunity where our bodies produce anti-bodies against our own tissue, causing health problems. This, obviously, is an undesired form of "immunomodulation". 

#7 - The final sentence reveals such hubris. It assumes nothing but good comes from eliminating disease. I know, what I just wrote sounds counter-intuitive. However, in a worldview that places man at the center and does not acknowledge a Creator, we become God and proceed as though we are. Our ability to control various elements of our lives (including suppression of disease through vaccination) gives us a false sense of control. We are not God. We live in a sin-sick world (and this through our own doing - see Genesis, chapters 1-3) and illness is one consequence of that. But God knew that Adam and Eve would sin and made provision for it (see the rest of the Bible). Even acts intended for good (ie: vaccination to suppress infection) can have unintended bad effects. Our current state of knowledge does not give us enough information to extrapolate what might be the unintended effect of elimination of various diseases through vaccination. It is complete arrogance to assume the only possible effect would be beneficial (see point #6). The Lord designed this world for discovery - including discovery about how our bodies work and how they interact with bacteria and virus in good and bad ways. We need to do the kind of science that will reveal what are the short and long term effects of vaccination - either good or bad. We may find that there is more to the story than vaccines are only good and infection is only bad. Reality is complex and science is almost never "settled". And humans are designed to live in freedom (see Genesis 1-3), with The Lord as our personal and collective leader. We keep proving that man cannot rule man (at least not very well) - perhaps we should "read the instructions" so to speak. 

#8 - The final sentence is written as though the theory has been proven. Fake science, fake science reporting. But true SCIENCE reporting! 
I refer to this as a puff-piece as it seems that everything is always sunshine and roses in a world with vaccines - never an adverse reaction ... only good things happen as a result of vaccination. Reality is seldom that simple. The reality is that we have lots of pseudo-science around vaccination but not much available as facts - either for or against vaccination. We could do the kind of science that would provide this information so people could make a more informed decision, and hopefully, would freely consent to vaccination, or freely decline as well. But in the current environment this is not very likely, as SCIENCE is agenda-driven. The primary agenda being money - getting grants and keeping them ... and this requires conforming to the expectation of the grantor (regardless of whether this is government money or private money). The other money-driven agenda around vaccines is that they are also huge business, and the love of money is the root of all manner of evil - including the evil of loving lies more than the truth. May God help us have the integrity to want truth in all things, including vaccine science (not SCIENCE). 

Monday, January 02, 2017

Haley v Offit: A Virtual Debate

This video is about 35 minutes long, available on You Tube at: 

It was produced by Richard P Milner of Public Affairs Media as an initial effort toward a larger documentary about vaccines and the controversy that surrounds them. He provides biographical information of Drs Haley and Offit as well, so I won't repeat that here - follow the link if you want more information. 

The format is point/counterpoint, described by the filmmaker as a virtual debate as the both individuals were interviewed separately and their responses edited together. It is unclear if who was conducting the interviews - this project would be stronger if that were disclosed at the beginning of the film. 

At 2:38min Haley offers his first criticism of Offit (and medical doctors/medical training in general) by pointing out that physicians receive very little, if any, training in toxicology. His particular expertise in this area is mercury - relevant because it is present in some vaccines as the preservative thimerasol (in flu shots in particular). 

At 2:55min Offit states vaccines provide the same protection, elicit the same response as spontaneous infection without the risk of infection. He should know better - this is not true, Haley corrects this. Offit conflates the risk of spontaneous infection with measles insinuating that many people would have serious (ie: life-long sequelae and/or death) as a result of spontaneously contracting measles. In doing this he conflates the benefits of vaccines and minimizes their risks (which we really do not have good information about since they have never been studied in a way that would provide accurate information about their risks). 

At 3:40min Haley points out that the USA uses the most vaccines yet we have the highest Infant Mortality Rate among industrialized/1rst world countries. 

At 4:10min Offit acknowledges that better hygeine played a role in the decrease of many infectious diseases but he attributes the greatest decline to vaccination. In all fairness, it is important to note that it is mortality (ie: deaths) that dropped precipitously, not morbidity (ie: illness) prior to the introduction of vaccines. We really do not know if vaccines are (overall) decreasing morbidity or perhaps, even contributing to it as we refuse to do the types of studies that would yield this information even though we could. To define health narrowly as "not displaying symptoms of infectious disease X" is to both re-define health and mis-define health, especially in light of the fact that we are missing information that would help us know what health is or is not (ie: to what extent are vaccines contributing in maintaining good health or contributing to chronic illness by toxic overload or skewing the immune system). 
Haley counters Offits dis/mis-information and the filmmaker shows graphs supporting Haley's statements/countering Offit's regarding mortality declines prior to the introduction of vaccines. 

At 6:35min The filmmaker displays a slide showing deaths from Scarlet Fever and Typhoid - both of which declined precipitously without the introduction of any vaccine. Death rates from Scarlet Fever were declining even before the introduction of penicillin/antibiotics. 

At 7:00min Haley posits we might be better off not spending billions/year on vaccines and instead invest that money in better hygeine and nutrition. It is not clear if he is advocating that for the USA or in other countries where the sanitation infrastructure is not as well developed. It seems to me that the primary place where there is a need for better sanitation is hospitals - staff and train the housekeeping department well (and pay them well too!), provide adequate licensed nursing staff so providers have time to actually wash their hands between patient contact. I think there is an over-reliance on the alcohol based hand sanitizers - they just cannot replace soap and water. 

At 7:29min Offit cites the Ben Franklin quote "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure". Haley agrees with him but clarifies he is trying to prevent children from being poisoned! 

At 7:35min Offit brags about safety systems for vaccines, citing VAERS (Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System) which is widely and reasonably believed not to capture the vast majority of adverse events following vaccines as it is a passive system and so many physicians do not even believe adverse events happen subsequent to vaccination - just lots of "coincidences", and who would report a coincidence?! Those who do believe patient histories of adverse events following prior vaccination and use their medical judgement in not administering further vaccinations are subject to witch-hunts (aka: Dr. Bob Sears, a California pediatrician who is under threat of losing his license in the post-SB277 era)

At 8:18min Offit again states his opinion that vaccines are "very safe". I've already stated twice just in this blog post that we do not have accurate information about vaccine safety. We could, but we do not. Offit has a right to his opinion just as we all do, but the factual foundation of his opinion is not "evidence based". He does acknowledge that vaccines can have side effects but follows that by saying he thinks their benefit outweighs any risk (again, an opinion for which there is precious little basis of support). Haley counters by stating we have no business injecting known neuro-toxins (aluminum and mercury) into infants. Haley also raises the point that vaccines contain animal - pig/cow/chicken/dog and human DNA as well. 

At 9:10min Offit is asked if vaccines cause autism - he of course, says "No, vaccines do not cause autism". He then goes on to state that "Biologically it doesn't make sense that they would" (cause autism) ... this is an assumption of incredible hubris. It is not the statement of a scientist who is persuing truth. In science you do not know something until you test and collect data, repeatedly. We have not tested vaccines in a way to elicit information that would confirm or deny his statement that vaccines do not cause autism. This could be done, but the government and health authorities in charge of vaccine safety refuse to so this kind of study. Haley states his theory that those who develop autism are genetically susceptible people who have been exposed to toxins - that autism is primarily a disease of environmental exposure. 

At 11:05min Offit acknowledges that parents make the observation that their child developed autism subsequent to vaccination but he denies the assocation. He relies on "association does not equal causation" and states we do the kind of studies to answer that question (except we don't!) - his contention that we do these sorts of studies is a lie. We do not. 
Haley talks about the toxicity of mercury - fair enough, that is his area of expertise. But there are plenty of other ingredients of concern in vaccines. It isn't just mercury. 

At 12:10min The interview asks Offit about studying an unvaccinated population (in or near Chicago). Offit hems and haws and concedes we **could** do a prospective study (in which you take two groups of similar people and 1 group gets the intervention/vaccine and the other does not) but then states this would be "unethical". This is a lie based on an assumption - and it is anti-science. 

For example: 
  • It was assumed to be unsafe for a woman to labor after having a cesarean.                 Now we know that is is safe to do so. 
  • It was assumed that women should not eat or drink in labor.                                     Now we know it is safe to do so.
  • It was assumed women "needed" an episotomy because this would reduce the risk of pelvic prolapse.                                                                                                          Now we know that is not true. 
  • It was assumed use of electronic fetal monitoring in labor would reduce rates of cerebral palsy.                                                                                                            Now we know that is not true. 
At 12:25min Offit insists it is not ethical to not give children vaccines because they can die of "vaccine preventable" diseases. Truly, it is not ethical to mandate products that are shielded from all liability, especially when the quality of evidence about their safety is so weak. In light of the drops in morality prior to the introduction of vaccines one wonders why he tries to make an argument from mortality! 

At 12:45min Haley refutes Offit's statement that it would be unethical to do a prospective study, though Haley doesn't insist on this - he does point out that the government does have data on unvaccinated children but he alleges they refuse to look at the rate of autism in this group. What Haley is saying is true - increasingly so in an era of electronic medical records and vaccine specific databases. 

At 13:27min Offit brings up autism in the Amish community ... and Haley refutes this by pointing out these (ie: those with autism) are actually vaccine-exposed. 

At 14:30min Haley brings up surveys of unvaccinated and that these generally reveal the unvaccinated to be in better health. Surveys are interesting, and can yield data that may show trends or associations and they can be a way to generate hypotheses but by design they cannot provide the kind of answers so many are wanting. 

At 15:00min Offit states thimerasol has been removed from the majority of vaccines (except for flu vaccines and some DTaP vaccines - he also says the flu vaccine is used only in those who are two or older, though that is no longer true as flu vaccine is recommended for infants 6 months and older). Haley corrects Offit's statement and reports that thimerosal is used in the manufacturing process of several vaccines even though it is no longer added to the end product as a preservative. But because thimerosal is used in the manufacturing process it is still in vaccines, just not at the same level as when it is used as a preservative. 

At 17:00min Haley states that thimerosal has not necessarily been removed from many of the vaccines in the CDC recommended schedule. He alleges that this is a talking point to reassure anxious parents, but that it may have been little more than slight of hand. 

At 17:30min The interviewer brings up with Offit the reports of experimental exposure of brain tissue to mercury (video of this is spliced in). The interviewer asks if he is aware of this. Offit explains this away by stating that animal models are not always predictive of responses in children. How convenient. And once again, anti-science. He states assumption as fact. 

At 20:00min Haley describes an experiment he did on rats exposing them to mercury and the effect this had on tubulin, a structure in brain cells. Mercury caused it to disintigrate and form tangles - something seen in Alzheimer's Disease. He goes on to relate how researchers in South Korea have shown mercury to be involved in making beta-amyloid plaques (another feature of Alzheimer's) and that mercury is implicated in Tau hyper-phosphorylation as well. Why would anyone want to be exposed to any amount of this?! But that is begging the question. 

At 22:00min The interviewer brings up the Burbacher study. Offit goes on to state there is no evidence that it is toxic to have mercury in your brain. 

At 22:45min Offit makes the absurd claim that the most sensitive way to determine if there is harm from mercury in vaccines is through an epidemiological study. Earlier he stated that association does not equal causation ... yet it is here that he wants to posit that lack of association equals safety! In other words, he wants to have his cake and eat it to. It is magic. If an epidemiological study cannot show causation, only association, then it likewise cannot prove safety. The only way to do that is with a sufficiently powered randomized double-blind controlled trial - the strongest type of prospective study. 

At 22:56min Offit says vaccines have been tested (in children) for safety, redundantly. This simply is not so. Where is even one randomized controlled trial, double-blinded with a true placebo (inert substance as a comparison to the vaccine)? Such a study does not exist because it has not been done - let alone a study comparing the whole CDC recommended schedule against a non-vaccinated group to compare the effects/long-term sequelae on health. 

At 23:20min Haley describes a study in rabbits injected with radioactive-labeled thimerosal that demonstrated the mercury may have left the blood but it did not leave the rabbit - it just concentrated in various tissues. 

At 24:30min Haley brings up the issue of Poul Thorson - a research who is on the FBI's Most Wanted List due to allegations he committed fraud with US government research money. He did autism research for the CDC. 

At 25:30min Haley alleges the CDC and its scientists gerry-rig statistics in their studies in order to get the results they want (#CDCwhistleblower anyone?) He states he and other authors detail this in a paper that is currently available ... the filmmaker fails to provide a reference for this. 

At 26:08min A congressional statement is posted about the results of a congressional investigation "Mercury in Medicine" (2003 - more than 13 years ago). The statement is an accurate, and devastating summary: 
"To date, studies conducted or funded by the CDC that purportedly dispute any correlation between autism and vaccine injury have been of poor design, under-powered, and fatally flawed. 
The CDC's rush to support and promote such research is reflective of a philosophical conflict in looking fairly at emerging theories and clinical data related to adverse reactions from vaccinations." 
At 26:50min Offit tries to posit the theory that "the dose makes the poison". The problem with this statement is that there is no evidence that mercury, in any form, is safe at any dose. He exposes himself as being anti-science once again - while this may be true of some things (Haley makes the comparison of 1 beer vs 10 beers) this is not necessarily true of all things (ie: mercury). We don't know what we don't know. Offit does not state theories as questions to be answered but tries to make assumptions facts. 

At 27:36min Haley brings up the concept of synergistic toxicity - a theory that is very relevant to vaccination as vaccines contain multiple components that are biologically active, all of which could be synergistic toxins - or this could be a variable in that we are giving multiple doses of vaccines simultaneously - a practice that has never been studied in a way to acertain safety or expose risk. 

At 28:30min Offit brings up the subject of safety of aluminum in vaccines and says that it has not been as well studied as mercury. Hardly a ringing endorsement of a substance that is injected into newborns on the day of birth (in the Hep B vaccine - how exactly is it necessary to "protect" a newborn from an infection obtained by sex or sharing of needles?) 

At 29:35min the interviewer brings up (with Offit) the subject of auto-immune disease. Offit deflects from vaccination to campylobacter of all things and that this is associated with Guillan-Barre Syndrome (GBS. He then moves on to Lyme disease. Neither of these bacteria have a vaccine, so why does he bring them up? It seems his case would be stronger if this were true of infections for which there is a vaccine. He ends this bizarre rabbit trail by stating there is no evidence vaccine do this. Except that there is - people have developed GBS subsequent to vaccination, as well as arthritis (it is listed as a possible side effect of the MMR vaccine). 

At 32:15min Offit claims the vaccinated are not at greater risk of asthma (among other problems) compared to the non-vaccinated. How he can say this when the study has not been done is something I don't understand. While vaccination may not be the only variable in many chronic diseases like asthma, it is anti-science to exclude them as a variable at all.

At 32:24min Haley describes a Canadian study looking at 2 groups of children - one got a vaccine at 2 months, the other at 4 months (he does not state what vaccine was being studied, nor is the citation provided either verbally or visually) but he relates the results demonstrated that asthma rates were higher in the group of children who got the vaccine at 2 months compared to the group that got it at 4 months. 

At 32:31min Haley accuses Offit of cherry-picking studies to "prove" vaccine safety. I think it would be difficult to accuse those who question vaccines of doing this as few studies are being designed and executed in a way that we would approve (see the quote from the Congressional investigation above). 

At 32:50min Offit denies there is an epidemic of autism. Apparently the one thing he does not agree with the CDC about. 

At 34:19min A series of 4 factual statements refuting Offit's claim that there is no epidemic of autism. One case of an infectious disease can be all that is necessary to declare an epidemic ... but a diagnosis affecting at least 1 in 68 (and increasing) is not an epidemic?! 
How convenient. 

What follows on subsequent screens are statistics for a variety of health conditions that the filmmaker relates as being related to mercury - perhaps, perhaps not. It remains to be determined what role mercury may play in the list - it may well be a variable but it is unlikely to be the only, or primary, variable. 

At 35:00min - one of the more alarming statistics is shown. That >50% of our children have a chronic illness. Not to overstate the obvious, but that isn't health. This is yet another domain in which we have normalized deviance. Our children may not be sick with measles for 1 week but they are sick with something else the rest of their lives. Not a great trade off. 

It ends with an appeal to support the filmmaker in finishing this project as he wants to interview more experts in a similar format for a larger, longer documentary. 

I encourage you to watch for yourself - what do you think?