Nope. No Questions.

Comment from David Foster on CDC's William Thompson: "So much for all the claims that there is no concrete claim of malfeasance by the CDC. 'I have a boss who is asking me to lie.' Any questions?" -0- Obama to...

How Mercury Triggered The Age of Autism

Conversation with the Authors of Plague

Autism Public Service Announcement

Canary Party Vaccine Court Video

A Glimpse into Autism

Meet Our Advertisers


Olmsted's Original UPI Series

  • The Age of Autism Tag

« OSR: Dietary Supplement Safe for Right Use | Main | Roy Grinker In Minnesota »

Show Me Vaccines are Safe! - The Importance of the Supreme Court and Bruesewitz v. Wyeth

Kent legal By Kent Heckenlively, Esq.

The genius of our political and legal system is that we don't fully trust ANYBODY.

Consider these two comments from James Madison, one of our Founding Fathers, and a co-author of The Federalist Papers, which explained the principles of our system of government.  Madison wrote, "If men were angels, no government would be needed," thus establishing the need for a system of laws.  He also wrote, "The truth is that all men having power ought to be mistrusted," which justified the need for an overlapping system of checks and balances to keep those in power relatively honest.

It's with these two principles in mind that I want to discuss Bruesewitz v. Wyeth, Inc., a case headed to the U. S. Supreme Court in September or October of 2010 which will answer the question of whether the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 prevents claimants from bringing an action for "design-defects" of vaccines in state court and why this case is so important.  Specifically, I want to focus on the arguments made in the brief in support of the Bruesewitz claimants by attorneys Kenneth Starr and Erwin Chemerinsky.

Most readers will be familiar with the name Kenneth Starr from the Clinton impeachment hearings but may not know that prior to that he was the U. S. Solicitor General and subsequent to the hearings became the dean of Pepperdine University School of Law and is now the president of Baylor University. 

When I was in law school the name Chemerinsky was invoked by my Constitutional Law professors with something akin to divine reverence.  Chemerinsky taught for more than twenty years at the University of Southern California, School of Law and is the current and founding dean of the University of California, Irvine School of Law.  To understand how politically opposite Chemerinksy is from Starr you should know that when President Clinton wanted to appoint Chemerinsky to a vacancy on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals he was told by Senate Republicans that the nomination would be dead on arrival. 

Despite these strong ideological differences, both esteemed lawyers agree that the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 has been misinterpreted for more than two decades.   They believe the Act was never intended to close the courthouse doors on what are known as "design defect" cases in which a manufacturer will be held liable if a safer alternative was available.  Starr and Chemerinsky have joined together in a brief to the Supreme Court (interested parties or acknowledged experts in the field may submit what are called "amici curiae" or "friend of the court" briefs in cases before the Supreme Court).  Both lawyers are experts in the field of federal and state authority so it will no doubt be of interest to the court that these lawyers with such differing ideologies agree on this point.  You can read their brief HERE.

Starr and Chemerinsky begin with the history of the relationship between the federal and state governments.  They both agree that while the power of the federal government trumps the power of the state governments, the federal government must show clear evidence of their assertion of that power.  In other words, if the federal government wants to take something from the states, like the ability of its citizens to sue for damage from products which injure them, it has to make its intentions "clear and manifest".  In the absence of such evidence it will be presumed the federal government did not intend to take such power away from the state governments.

"The principle recognized in Rice and its many progeny is necessary to protect state soverignty and to ensure the proper functioning of the political safeguards of federalism.  Requiring evidence of a clear and manifest preemptive purpose provides a political check, by affording notice to the states' representatives in Congress, and it also creates a procedural check, by demanding that state-law-displacing choices satisfy the bicameralism and presentment standards of Article I."  (Starr and Chemerinsky brief, P. 4)

The brief goes on to state, "Congress must make clear its intent to alter the federal balance and displace state law, particularly in the areas where states have historically exercised their police powers to protect consumers and promote public health, welfare, and safety." (Starr and Chemerinsky brief, P. 5)

After having demonstrated that taking away the right of citizens to sue in state court for damages can only be done by a "clear and manifest" declaration by the federal government Starr and Chemierinsky turn to the actual language of the statute, specifically 42 U.S.C., section 300aa-22(b)(1).  "No vaccine manufacturer shall be liable in a civil action for damages arising from a vaccine-related injury or death associated with the administration of a vaccine after October 1, 1988, if the injury or death resulted from side effects that were unavoidable (italics mine) even though the vaccine was properly prepared and was accompanied by proper direction and warnings."  (Starr and Chemerinsky brief, P. 7) 

They then go on to say, "Although the Vaccine Act creates a mandatory national compensation program, the Act contains a savings clause that expressly contemplates the preservation of state law claims.  (Starr and Chemerinsky brief, P. 8)

The question then becomes one of how to determine whether a vaccine is "unavoidably unsafe" and how that determination is made.  The answer of Starr and Chemirinsky is that such determinations must be made on a case by case basis, meaning that they would be determined in state courts, according to the laws of those individual states.  "Properly construed, Section 22(b)(1) does not preempt all design defect claims against vaccine manufacturers on a categorical basis, but rather provides that such a manufacturer cannot be held liable for defective design only if it is determined, on a case-by-case basis that the vaccine was unavoidably unsafe."  (Starr and Chemerinsky brief, P. 9)

What does this mean in practical terms?

It means that regardless of whether you're conservative or liberal you believe that not only are doctors not God, they're not angels, either.  The same can be said of the pharmaceutical companies as well.  They have power over us in their healing role, and we are wise to view their claims with a certain level of skepticism.  If they want to escape liability for vaccine injuries they must demonstrate that no safer alternatives existed.

The pharmaceutical companies need to come into court just like other manufacturers and convince us of the safety of their products.  Can you imagine if other industries had their own courts?  How about "Foreign Oil Company Court?"  Maybe "Cell Phone Court?"  Or possibly "Hybrids that Suddenly Accelerate Court?" 

No, these suggestions are just silly.  We instinctively understand that such a system would invite abuse.  And so it is with "Vaccine Court."  That's why we need the pharmaceutical companies to be in a regular civil court.  We the citizens of this great country have a few questions which we don't think they have yet answered.  Here are a couple questions I might ask.

Could you please show us the studies on the safety of injecting thimerosal into people, and please let it be something else other than that study from the 1930s in which you injected thimerosal into people with terminal meningitis, watched them for a day, then declared the thimerosal safe?

Could you also please show us the studies on the safety of injecting aluminum into newborns?

We'd also like to see your studies showing that the various passenger viruse from monkeys, pigs, and mice which are commonly found in vaccines are really harmless.

We haven't been able to ask these questions for the past twenty years because the rules of Vaccine Court prevent it.  If Bruesewitz v. Wyeth gets decided in our favor, then we can ask all these questions and more and the pharmaceutical companies will have to answer.  It will be the law.

And in addition to answering our questions they will need to provide us with all documents regarding their safety testing, or lack thereof, on these vaccines.  (Another right which doesn't exist in Vaccine Court.) As an aside, there would be a financial incentive to law firms to generate research on questions left unanswered by the pharmaceutical companies, such as the rate of neurological diseases in vaccinated and unvaccinated populations.  Wouldn't it be great to have the law on the side of safety rather than pharmaceutical profits?

That is the importance of this case.


Kent Heckenlively is Contributing Editor to Age of Autism

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d8357f3f2969e20133f236d2d6970b

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Show Me Vaccines are Safe! - The Importance of the Supreme Court and Bruesewitz v. Wyeth:

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

@ Karen.
The Grants could and did pursue the tort option. I think it would be appropriate for you to read "A Stolen Life" before commenting further on their case, because so far, your facts are wrong. The Grants went through the tort system to the Court of Appeals (case number 91-5035 ). Even though they had many doctors testifying in their favor, and impeccable clinical notes from most of those doctors, they lost their tort case. Why? Because Scottie’s doctor said in court that the vaccine that caused his damage was Quadrigen, and that he had told the parents this at the time. However, that's not what he wrote in the medical records... he wrote “DPT + Polio”, (and it was written in his baby book as DPT + Polio). At no point did he document in his files with, "Parke Davis: Quadrigen Lot #123456." That omission resulted in the Grants losing. Mr Schwartz was never involved in either the Grant tort case against Parke Davis, or their application to the VICP, so wherever you got that piece of information is unreliable at best, and intentionally misleading at worst.

The Grants have always maintained, aside from the huge legal deficiencies in the act, that the vaccine manufacturers should be funding it - NOT the taxpayers. No other industry has ever been allowed indemnity on products which the government mandates to be given to children, and then expects ALL parents to shell out their own money via taxes on the vaccines (or through Federally mandated initiatives like the H1N1 campaign) to support the few children lucky enough to be in the minority who are awarded compensation. With an "in-perpetuity" indemnity, it doesn’t really matter what a vaccine contains. The act allows the interpretation of all vaccines as being "unavoidably unsafe", which not only stops any legal investigation into vaccine manufacturer's practices, but also means that there is no price for the manufacturers to pay when children are injured or die from the use of their "unavoidably unsafe" vaccines. While the manufacturers happily expand their portfolios, the parents forever bail the vaccine manufacturers out with tax dollars. Feeling a little like Wall Street in my view.

The only "winners" who can be guaranteed any payout from the 1986 act, are the lawyers since they get paid whether the children they represent win, or lose. We can pretend that this issue isn't black or white... in my eyes it most certainly is.

Media Scholar

[[[I'm fairly certain that the NVIC did NOT help Marge's family. In any way, shape, or form. ]]]

Part of what Jeff Schwartz got written into law was that vaccine-injured children could still get compensation even if it could not be proven which vaccine manufacturer's vaccine was responsible for their injury or death.

I understand that Marge Grant contacted Jeff after the law was passed and Jeff helped her negotiate a VICP award for her son. I also understand that she was not able to successfully sue Parke Davis (the manufacturer of the DPT that hurt her son) because her son's medical records had been lost or destroyed. Without medical records that at least document that a specific vaccine was given - you have no case in civil court and no hope of being compensated at all.

[[[Be that as it may, either this legislation, so fervently supported and pushed through Congress by NVIC, has been a triumph for injured children and families, or it hasn't.]]]

It's neither.

For families like the Grant's who, for various reasons, cannot pursue a civil option, the VICP is all they have and in some cases, has been useful. While the compensation that the Grant's and other families get under VICP may not be enough, getting some help is better than getting none at all.

If parents had been able to easily and successfully sue the manufacturers there would have been no need for the VICP. In fact, there were plenty of families who got nothing in civil court because the deep-pocket manufacturers could outspend and easily beat them. Or, cases were quietly settled under intimidating circumstances right before court for paltry amounts by families who were worn down and outspent. Pursuing a remedy in civil court wasn't easy for families of vaccine-injured children.

This is not to say that the VICP is a great program and doesn't need to be improved. Clearly, that statement is far from true. I don't think it's possible to take a complex situation like what families with vaccine-injured children face and boil it down to whether the program has been a complete triumph or not. This is not a simple black and white situation. For some families the VICP has worked well, for far too many others it has not worked at all.

Karen

@Karen Ullman

"Does she (Marge Grant) also think that the program is worthless and should never have been created?"

From page 128 A Stolen Life by Marge Grant....

"Not only were trusting families who supported and became members of NVIC led to believe this law would force the production of only safe and effective vaccines and would legally demand accurate reporting and recording of vaccine-adverse reactions - they were also led to believe that hurt children would receive fair and simple justice and be adequately compensated in a timely manner. Not so. None of these promises have been delivered with the enactment of the law.

Many vaccine-injured children are excluded from the highly restrictive compensation program. This serves to validate the government's assertion that vaccine injuries and deaths are a myth and almost non-existent.

Even worse, as I and other critics of this law predicted and repeatedly testified in various congressional hearings, this law would literally provide the vaccine manufacturers, regulators, and administrators with a license to maim and kill."

@media scholar: [[[Stonehenge is closed and the South American tribes no longer crush the skulls of innocent infants slitting their throats on an alter erroneously thinking the sacrifice will lead to a bountiful harvest.]]]

Good point. I wish I weren't such a 'cynic', thank you for giving me some optimism.

@karen: [[[I'm glad the VICP (and NVIC) helped Marge's family to get at least some compensation for their losses. Perhaps it wasn't enough money but it's more than most families have received (including almost everyone on this list). Other people like Jeff Schwartz and Barbara Loe Fisher got absolutely nothing (nor did they file). And Jeff's daughter died. ]]]

I'm fairly certain that the NVIC did NOT help Marge's family. In any way, shape, or form. Be that as it may, either this legislation, so fervently supported and pushed through Congress by NVIC, has been a triumph for injured children and families, or it hasn't. I think we know the answer...it has been an epic failure, and it should be surprising to no one, since its shortcomings were addressed well in advance to the push through Congress.

I'm not sure whether or not Jeff Schwartz or BLF filing a claim for compensation is relevant (given her entire career was founded upon vaccine injury). The tragic death of Jeff's daughter also doesn't have much to do with what I've been discussing... both seem more like an appeal to emotion to distract from the real issues.

Cynic,

[[[With respect to Marge Grant, she was compensated, and you should ask *her* how that compensation has benefited her family. The answer, not surprisingly, is that it wasn't near enough and that she would have fared better in the tort system.]]]

I'm glad the VICP (and NVIC) helped Marge's family to get at least some compensation for their losses. Perhaps it wasn't enough money but it's more than most families have received (including almost everyone on this list). Other people like Jeff Schwartz and Barbara Loe Fisher got absolutely nothing (nor did they file). And Jeff's daughter died.

Karen

But even then, it can never be fully undone...
--------------------------

Well? Stonehenge is closed and the South American tribes no longer crush the skulls of innocent infants slitting their throats on an alter erroneously thinking the sacrifice will lead to a bountiful harvest.

Unfortunately, in this advanced age there are those that still falsely believe the survival of man involves human sacrifices.

Perhaps it's time for the other half of Andrew Wakefield's quote?

"Neither I, nor my colleagues subscribe to the belief that any child is expendable. History has encountered and dealt with such beliefs. You, the parent's and children, are the source of the inspiration and strength for our endeavours; our quest for truth through science - a science that is compassionate, uncompromising and un-compromised. I do not mean to stir you to mutiny, but be assured that armed with this science it is in your power to force this issue, in your pediatricians office, in Congress, in the Law Courts. Keep faith with your instincts - they have served you well." - Andrew Wakefield

[[[Clearly, some of you - Hilary, Ray, Media Scholar - enjoy bashing Barbara, NVIC and the VICP.]]]

You are misinterpreting a sugar-free account of events, as "bashing". I'm simply recounting the history of their inception, and the events surrounding the passage of this legislation. It is what it is, and if it makes BLF look less noble than the public image she has constructed for herself, this is not my fault.

With respect to Marge Grant, she was compensated, and you should ask *her* how that compensation has benefited her family. The answer, not surprisingly, is that it wasn't near enough and that she would have fared better in the tort system. She'll also direct you to other people that weren't compensated due to the ambiguity of certain parts of table injuries, or their unjustified removal altogether.

[[[Does she also think that the program is worthless and should never have been created?]]]

I won't speak for Hilary, but I'll speak for myself... What might happen if vaccine makers were actually subjected to the process of discovery when forced to defend against personal injury of a product that is being mandated for universal use among minors? What might happen when a group of 5,000 people file a class action lawsuit against a vaccine maker claiming their children regressed into "Autism", or "autistic like behaviors"? Do you think they would have been more justly heard in a civil court of law, or by the Special Masters, who went to great lengths to showboat the Omnibus as a campaign against Andrew Wakefield? I can assure you that we wouldn't be having to engage in circular discussions about whether or not autism prevalence is an artifact, or whether vaccines play a contributory (or causal) role in "regression" or "autistic-like" symptoms. Doctors wouldn't be telling parents that they are hallucinating, or telescoping, or suffering from confirmation bias when they describe the events surrounding their children's regression.

[[[If you all don't like the VICP perhaps you'd be better off spending your time and effort working with legislators and advocacy groups to change/abolish the law.]]]

Perhaps you haven't noticed, but people *have* worked very diligently to get philosophical exemptions allowed in their states (since there is no Federal law allowing such, another thing that advocates wanted) as a first step in correcting its passage. Hopefully with this particular case going before the SCOTUS, we can remedy it further. But even then, it can never be fully undone...

Clearly, some of you - Hilary, Ray, Media Scholar - enjoy bashing Barbara, NVIC and the VICP. Characterizing the VICP as being a completely bad and worthless program that only benefits vaccine manufacturers is nonsense. Hilary, you mentioned Marge Grant in an earlier post - I understand her vaccine-injured son was compensated by the VICP. Does she also think that the program is worthless and should never have been created? I know a lot of autism parents with vaccine-injured children who read this blog who wish the program would have compensated them for their losses.

If you all don't like the VICP perhaps you'd be better off spending your time and effort working with legislators and advocacy groups to change/abolish the law.

Karen


I agree with Hilary. Barbara Fisher could have fought the 1986 legislation and tried to either get it improved to help the families or if she couldn't, do the honorable thing and say she wanted no part in passing this bad legislation. Instead Barbara Fisher was involved in passing the bad legislation that screwed millions of families and then years later say it was a bad law and not admit she was instrumental in getting this 1986 legislation passed.

Revisionist history by Barbara Fisher and NVIC.

Forming a non profit agency, and a job for yourself, on the backs of injured children is NOT noble in my opinion.
--------------------
That's a gutsy statement to make around this place. We are remiss if we do not express our conscience.

This statement speaks louder for our children than any anti-American vaccine shill organization has ever.

BTW, the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System also known as VAERS should be more aptly named FUBAR. It's a quite a triumph of toy data which in no way can reflect the totality of government mandated vaccine injury carnage.

From October of 1988:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ispk94iPJfU

Sorry if this shows up twice, I didn't see it, so I thought I'd repost it:

@Karen, [[These parents tried to do the best they could to help other parents of vaccine injured children 25 years ago - and they've made very important contributions ]]

To some maybe. But to me, no..they didn't. If it weren't for the publicity that followed after the first Donahue show, the NVIC wouldn't even be around today. BLF admitted this on April 14, 1995 in response to a letter that highly criticised the legislation we are so colorfully discussing at this moment. She was "shocked and deeply saddened" by the correspondence that called a spade a spade, and let her know that through the facilitation and passage of this wretched legislation (against the advice of others) the suffering that awaited innocent children belonged at her feet.

She said, "by the winter of 1983, Dissatisfied Parents Together (DPT) learned that federal vaccine injury compensation legislation had been given a high priority and was being created in health subcommittees in both houses due to: ...(2) national publicity in the spring of 1982 following the broadcast of "DPT: Vaccine Roulette" on NBC which resulted in the formation of Dissatisfied Parents Together..."

The question is, "Was she on that show? Was this organisation featured on that show? And if they weren't, how in the world did this 'publicity' allow their formation?"

[[Any mistakes they made were not made because they were trying to hurt children and protect drug companies. That's really a horrendous and outrageous claim. ]]

No one has made this claim. BLF and Jeff Schwartz received input with respect to the legislation, and ignored it. The result, is Vaccine Court, and every unjust aspect it brings.

[[The responsibility for what has happened to our children should be placed squarely at the foot of those responsible for creating, operating and promoting mandatory vaccination policies: the pharmaceutical industry, public health officials, pediatric organizations and politicians. Not parents like Barbara and Jeff. ]]

Vaccination policy would not have evolved into the animal it has become if it weren't for the instrumental roles played by both BLF and Jeff Schwartz... roles that ignored the advice of other advocates.

Forming a non profit agency, and a job for yourself, on the backs of injured children is NOT noble in my opinion.

Fabulous! Thank you for this. I hope you don't mind that I am sharing it on my blog.

With warm regards,
Leslie
http://www.outrunning-autism.blogspot.com/

Pamela, first I was confused, but then I went back and re-read your comments with "new eyes" so to speak, analysing them much more carefully.

One of the good things about 1983, was that email wasn't the mode of communication. Therefore, a wonderful paper trail was laid both in regard to letters, and the printed congressional hearings of the time. As well as printed media etc….

But the main black and white answers are in the letters and hearings, crystal clear for all who read them.

To back up Media Scholar, the point isn't just that Reagan didn't want that bill. Most of the White House officials didn't either. Neither did the Department of Health and Human services, or the Justice Department. If you believe the vaccine manufacturers (which I don’t) most of them didn’t want it. Merck was the only one who “said” they did …. I think they all did because legal indemnity is the ultimate cherry - and there is a reason why Merck could say they did, because in a sense, Merck had the inside running on the writing of the law.

Firstly, Jeff Swartz used to work for Senator Paul Rogers, who was "upgraded" to sit upon the Board of Directors for Merck. Paul Rogers, was of course, instrumental in pushing through the 1974 swine flu vaccine indemnity law. Jeff Schwartz had also worked closely with Steve Lawton, a former legal employee of Paul Rogers. Steve Lawton was the counsel retained by the American Academy of Pediatrics, to work hand in glove with Jeff and Barbara to co-author this legislation. So Merck had everything to gain by levering to shape this legislation. Who better than NVIC from their point of view? Why wouldn't Merck support legislation that they were essentially writing as well?

Front page of that Spring 1987 newsletter congratulates everyone on a victory about which they said was a result of "negotiating, manoeuvering, and good old fashioned arm twisting." And every time, (as admitted in that Spring Newsletter) that it looked like the evidence of the rest of the vaccine critics might hold way, just as page 13 of the newsletter states…”DPT mobilizes to Save the Bill”….

Just as the Spring newsletter details in its whole issue…., without NVIC constant rolling orchestrated campaign, that bill might have been dead in the water.

Had that been the case, I wonder what Kent would have written about in 2010?

@ Karen

****how many vaccine injury lawsuits against vaccine manufactures have been won by parents in Canada, New Zealand, Australia, Great Britain or any other country in the European Union in the past two decades?****

I can only speak for the country we are in. Since the vaccines used here, are made in USA, it's not possible to sue manufacturers in another country, so there is a scheme here where parents apply to it for "medical misadventure". The standards of "proof" are very high.

In terms of that system, many parents have won compensation. I don't know how many. given that I helped fight some of the cases, I primarily know the ones I was involved in.

Pamela,

You claim that BLF back in 1986, "had just won on getting the DPT changed to the DTaP" but the acellular vaccine wasn't licensed by the FDA until 1991, and wasn't available for infants until 1996.

http://www.kidsource.com/kidsource/content/news/infant_vaccine8_1_96.html

"First Acellular Pertussis Vaccine Approved For Infants

WASHINGTON, July 31, 1996 -- The Food and Drug Administration today announced it has licensed the first acellular pertussis vaccine for use in infants and children two months of age and older for the primary series of immunizations. The vaccine protects infants against whooping cough while causing fewer side-effects than whole-cell pertussis vaccines now on the market.

Currently, U.S. children receive a whole-cell pertussis vaccine in combination with diphtheria-tetanus toxoid, commonly called DTP, at 2, 4 and 6 months of age, with additional doses of either a DTP or DT vaccine with an acellular pertussis component (DTaP) at 12-18 months and before going to school.

The vaccine approved today for infants is one of two DTaP vaccines already approved for children to be given as fourth and fifth doses following three DTP doses. This approval should give parents more confidence in the safety of the pertussis vaccine their infants will receive."

Pamela,

The original intend was not to expose Barbara Loe Fisher as a self-promoting turn-coat, but rather to point out that Ronald Reagan reluctantly signed the legislation.

The supporting contemporaneous news articles reveal that the VICP legislation was widely publicized as a mild alternative to civil trial, not a replacement; at best, vaccine injury arbitration.

The point concerning the preservation of Constitutional Rights to sue for vaccine injury is also contemporaneously supported by a person who is actively advocating in support of vaccine-injured people, not vaccine manufacturing drug company product line extensions.

The facts are irreconcilable. DPT said vaccine injury compensation was non-existent before they birthed their VICP baby. On the other hand, vaccine makers claimed damage lawsuits before DPT's bill were killing them.

Together this means the cost of making sure nobody was being compensated for vaccine injury was bad for the vaccine business?

The monumental efforts are now to conceal the cost of mass vaccination policy in human lives, bright futures, and continuing medical care related to vaccine injury.

Why do you suppose Offit and Singer are vehemently attacking forms of Autism treatments?

They are protecting the cost-effectiveness of mass vaccinations. They *think* they have civil liability all sewn up.

Hillary

In answer to your question, of course Barbara and Jeff "were involved in the drafting of, and writing of, the 1986 legislation?" I don;t think anyone has argued otherwise. The distinction that you seem to be missing is that her involvement does not make her "responsible" for the end product. She did not have that degree of control and not is she responsible for the fact that what she fought for and won in the legislation was not carried out.

The fact that Congress invited Barbara (and Jeff) to the table does not mean they "wrote" the legislation. They were simply given the opportunity for input.

The way this sort of thing works is that the advocates have a chance to submit what they want to see in the bill or to make suggested changes to it and they submit that back to Congress. The authors (Congressmen) of the bill then determine what they keep in, what suggestions they accept and what they remove. Keep in mind lobbyist from pharma were giving their input as well.

Barbara's words indicate that she was putting this out to the broader organization to give the membership a chance to give input and to build more strength in numbers. She is clear in the quotes you provided that she is not entirely pleased with the bill and that there were constraints on how much control she has over that.

I'm not sure what you think would have been gained by not being involved at all. There are times when that is certainly appropriate but as Benendetta said," If Barbara had raged and thrown a fit they would have thrown her out. Then we could blame her for that instead...." i.e. it seems there was no way she was going to win with you folks and the repeated logic here seems to be that because she was invited to the table she was solely responsible for the outcome....that conclusion is simply incorrect and illogical.

Pamela, You say, ****1st, BLF did not write the legislation...far from it.****

To quote Barbara's words: " ... the leaders of Dissatisfied Parents Together (DPT) could either choose to have input into the creation of the bill or we could choose to not participate"

and "to decline to be part of the process and have no hope of having the concerns of vaccine injured children and their families, ... considered in the bill."

NVIC, then DPT, sent copies of the first writing of the bill to various people for comment in November 1983, and a similar variation of the following sentence appears in all letters:

"We would very much appreciate your review and suggestions regarding the bill. Although it has been introduced, it is surely not locked in stone and we would welcome your suggestions for how the bill could be improved.

From out standpoing in negotiating with the AAP, we do not feel the bill is "perfect". In fact, there are numerous things that we would probably change. But some constraints of political feasilibity were operative and we did the best we could at this stage in the process.

Hopefully with your suggestions the bill can be improved."

So the light of these requests from NVIC people ,does it, or does it not look to you, as if Barbara and Jeff were involved in the drafting of, and writing of, the 1986 legislation?

Front page of DPT news, Spring 1987, vol 3 No 1. (which should be compulsory reading for anyone interested in history....)

"S. 2117 was the product of nearly two years of difficult negotiations between DPT and the American Academy of Pediatrics."

Define "product"???

The paragraph on Bell of Atri is messy. Please could you either publish this, or substitute the above paragraph with this:

The Bell of Atri (now wound up) was co-founded by Dr Morris and another ex FDA doctor, Dr Bobby Young (who gave Lea Thomspon the title for her programme “DPT: vaccine roulette” ). Dr Morris was the Chairman, Dr John O Nestor the vice chairman, and Dr John Chriss Hoffman was the secretary-treasurer. The Bell of Atri was a public interest organization funded by 10 prominent doctors, all outspoken critics of vaccination. Dr Morris who was head of Bell of Atri had worked for decades for the DBS, then the FDA which superceded the DBS primarily in vaccine safety. He had previously spoken out about the flu vaccines, because he was working in the FDA in 1974 at the time of the Swine Flu vaccine. His job was to test it for safety. Another of his job, was analysing the swine virus involved.

He determined two things. The first was that the pig virus was an ordinary virus which held no dangers for most people and secondly, that the vaccine was dangerous and had the potential for serious neurological reactions. His bosses refused to tell the public about that, so he went to Phil Donohue in 1974, and appeared on his programme to tell the public what his bosses would not. Dr Morris also held public symposia about the situation to alert the public. This action resulted in a 7 year court for wrongful dismissal case, which eventually he won ... but who would want to go back to FDA after being treated worse than a disposable commodity?

Pamela:

****2nd, she was the only one invited because way back in '86 her organization was the only game in town, as far as I know, and she had just won on getting the DPT changed to the DPaT. ****

1) Your understanding is incorrect. In 1986, NVIC was a newcomer on the block. There were other far better established "organisations" with far better experience than NVIC could hope to muster.
This is where people need to understand the history they don’t know. Assumptions are easily made by people who weren’t around in 1974, 1982, 1986, but think that what they know is all there is to know.

Marge Grant, had campaigned about the whole cell vaccine, for at least a decade before Barbara knew there was an issue. Indeed, she was well known. It was a New York man, called Dan Rescinitie who rang NBC and said, "You need to do a story and talk to Marge Grant" Marge was rung on January 16, 1981, and that was the start of the planning for the April 1982 programme. After six months of looking at the medical literature provided by Marge, and furthering her own investigations, Lea was more than horrified at the situation with regard to the whole cell vaccine. (For those wanting to know more about what Marge did and why, please go to www.dptshot.com and order Marge Grant's book about her son Scottie and what happened 49 years and thereafter, called "A Stolen Life")

On April 19, 1982, Barbara didn't even know there was an issue. At about 8.30 that night she watched Lea Thompson interview Marge Grant, Jim Grant, and their vaccine damaged son Scottie, in his special wheelchair. She also watched other mothers part of Marge's network, from Wisconsin and Chicago, like Evelyn Gaugert, Emily Yankovich, Gail and Lorenzo Brown talk about their children. She watched Dr Robert Mendelsohn, a paediatrician and author who had a very long history of speaking out and writing against vaccines.

Right there, a light bulb went off in Barbara’s head which was the first time she even knew there was an issue.

By this time Marge and Jim Grant had, along with a group of other people spent a decade fighting, and achieved philosophical objection in Wisconsin way before the inception of NVIC, so if you live there, you have Mrs Marge Grant to thank for that.

On 8th December 1982, Barbara also watched The Phil Donohue Show, with Mr Jim and Mrs Marge Grant, along with Dr Robert Mendelsohn, as well as Dr Anthony J. Morris, and Dr Bobby Young. Obviously some planning had been going on between April and December, because something happened on this show, which I’m not prepared to discuss at this time, which derailed the vaccine movement in USA. (I spoke a bit about that in my first post). The action alienated Barbara from everyone else who knew what she had done.

But let’s stick to the topic of who was who up until 1986.

The Bell of Atri (now wound up) was co-founded by Dr Morris and another ex FDA doctor, Dr Bobby Young (who gave Lea Thomspon the title for her programme “DPT: vaccine roulette” ). Dr Morris was the Chairman, Dr John O Nestor the vice chairman, and Dr John Chriss Hoffman was the secretary-treasurer. The Bell of Atri was a public interest organization funded by 10 prominent doctors, all outspoken critics of vaccination. worked for decades for the DBS, then the FDA which superceded the DBS. Dr Morris was head of an organisation called Bell of Atri. Dr Anthony J Morris, had previously spoken out about the flu vaccines, and was working in the FDA in 1974 at the time of the Swine Flu vaccine. His job was to test it for safety. Another of his job, was analysing the swine virus involved. He determined two things. The first was that the pig virus was an ordinary virus which held no dangers for most people and secondly, that the vaccine was dangerous and had the potential for serious neurological reactions. His bosses refused to tell the public about that, so he went to Phil Donohue in 1974, and appeared on his programme to tell the public what his bosses would not. He also held public symposia about the situation to alert the public. This action resulted in a 7 year court for wrongful dismissal case, which eventually he won ... but who would want to go back to FDA after being treated worse than a disposable commodity?

The Bell of Atri worked in very close co-operation with Mrs Marge Grant, www.dptshot.com, Dr Robert Mendelsohn, and other doctors within the community.

So the issue of the whole cell vaccine had been in the focus of Americans, long before Lea Thompsons programme, "DPT - vaccine roulette". Given that the acellular vaccine was only licensed for use in the USA in 1992, there is no way NVIC could have been chosen because BLF had “succeeded” in changing the whole cell to acellular. If you want to give the credit for that, where it is really due, you need to study the media articles from 1974 onwards, to see exactly where NVIC actual fits into that issue. For me, I think that Dr Kevin Geraghty is the person who can take the most credit for that.

Between December 1982, and 1984, Barbara focus was primarily gathering material with Harris Coulter for the book “DPT A shot in the dark” which Dr Mendelsohn refused to write the forward to.

In the winter of 1983, NVIC were advised by Senate legislators and congressional staffers in both the House and Senate that Congress was going to act to respond to the public crisis created by Lea Thompson’s “DPT:Vaccine Roulette”. NVIC were given a choice of 1) being part of the process and hope that their work would make the bill better, or 2) decline to be part of the process and have no hope of having the concerns of vaccine injured children and their families considered in the bill. (these are Barbara’s words, not mine) So in other words, they were saying, “If you don’t do this, we will ignore all parents”.

It seems that at no point did NVIC suggest that other people and organizations already in existence, were more knowledgeable and better placed to represent the community as a whole

In terms of the public, issues intensified in December 1984, when the Fresno Bee ran a series of articles which brought to the fore, all the opponents of the whole cell vaccine, of whom Barbara had less prominence than those who had been campaigning for years.

At the same time (1984) Gannet News Service did a series called "The Vaccine Machine. John Hanchette was a reporter with the Gannet News Service, who over the next few years, had published many many articles on the topic (which I have bound in a book...)

As I go through all the newsmedia articles I have from 1974 onwards, I would say that the biggest advocates for parents up until 1982, were Dr Robert Mendelsohn, Dr Morris from Bell of Atri, Mrs Marge Grant, Dr Kevin Geraghty from California, and a group of lawyers, who in the previous decades, had fought many cases on behalf of parents, which, as each one was won, hit the media with big headlines.

THESE high pay outs to damaged children, in the tort system, prior to 1982, were the very cases which provoked the vaccine manufacturers to decide that they needed to expand the indemnity legislation accorded them in 1974, for the dangerous swine flu vaccine, to include all the other vaccines. That is why they insisted that part of the Government team be the team which worked with them and wrote the 1974 legislation.

What the manufacturers wanted to do was neutralise the publicity of cases; neutralise the groups of lawyers also speaking out in the media; neutralise the complaints of Dr Kevin Geraghty, Dr Morris and Dr Mendelsohn. And yes, neutralize NVIC.

But to suggest that NVIC was chosen because Barbara was the only light on the horizon, and had succeeded in doing something in 1984, which wasn’t “done” until 1992, is again, to ignore history.

A question needs to be asked, which is, “Why are people most vocal in the defence of NVIC, ignorant of the real history of vaccine critics in USA”?

Hilary;
I think you might just be right. Being timid has gotten me no where in life. Maybe we did need a leader that was willing to be lead out in handcuffs.

As WE all should be willing to do also.

Patron99

Thank you for correcting me. I did misunderstood and that you were supporting the criticisms.

Whether I support every move she's made over the past three decades or not, I certainly respect her work and the many years she has spent fighting this battle. For anyone who attented her international conference on vaccination or has spent much time on her website. It's obvious that she does not believe vaccines are safe, does not support pharma and because the CDC has acknowledge that no vaccine will ever be 100% safe all citizens should have the right to choice.

I guess the big rub here is that people are actually suggesting that giving pharma liability was her idea. It amazes me that some don't seem to understand that that deal was between Congress and Pharma; was made before the legislation was hammered out and long before BLF was invited to the table. Barbara had no real power to do anything more than broker some limited aspects of the compensation program. For example, the legislation mandated further research which has never happened. What pieces she was able to win on she had no power to make sure they were carried out. Thus the failures we see today in the program. I.E the promises they did make to BLF were broken which explains why she's as angry about the joke the court is as anyone.

Hillary

Thank you for the illustration however there are two major problems with the picture you have painted.

1st, BLF did not write the legislation...far from it.

2nd, she was the only one invited because way back in '86 her organization was the only game in town, as far as I know, and she had just won on getting the DPT changed to the DPaT.

This was a great article. But I'm perplexed and troubled by some of the comments.

I hope that everyone knows that before the 1986, the government and doctors insisted that the DPT vaccine and MMR vaccine did NOT brain injure or kill. The drug companies, with their billions of dollars in the bank and friends on Capitol Hill, were able to settle most vaccine injury lawsuits for low sums out of court before going to trial. IF they got anything at all, parents with severely injured children who would never be able to feed themselves let alone walk or toilet themselves were typically getting under $200,000.

The 1986 law isn't perfect but it admitted in our law that vaccines injure and kill. Furthermore, the 1991 and 1994 IOM reports, which were part of the law, were historic admissions by a scientific body that vaccines can injure and kill. The $2 billion paid out since 1988 is concrete evidence that vaccines injure and kill. Without that law I'm sure that the government, manufacturers and medicine would still be denying that vaccine can and do kill and injure.

Plus, if you read the law you will see that there were legal requirements - even though doctors don't obey them and no one makes them obey the law - that doctors are supposed to give parents vaccine information and write down reaction information and report to VAERS. Before that law - there was no VAERS. Now, the public can view VAERS reports and that wasn't possible before the law. Is VAERS perfect - no - but it's better than having nothing at all.

Without the 1986 law, doctors like Offit would be able to say without any proof at all that vaccines DO NOT injure and kill; there would have been no decent compensation for vaccine injuries given to any of the more than 2000 vaccine victims that did manage to get a VICP award and most of them would never have seen a civil lawsuit because many didn't have the money to pay for lawyers to represent them. No, that isn't enough and yes more people should get awards but NOBODY would have gotten anything if it weren't for the law.

As far as lawsuits being a deterrent to new vaccine development - how many vaccine injury lawsuits against vaccine manufactures have been won by parents in Canada, New Zealand, Australia, Great Britain or any other country in the European Union in the past two decades? These countries, which are home to major pharmaceutical companies enjoying a global vaccine business, did NOT pass legislation like the US did in 1986. I'd like to know how many big vaccine injury lawsuit wins against pharmaceutical companies and doctors have occurred in these countries and whether the lack of a law like VICP has served as a deterrent for those governments to not recommend new vaccines. Tell us how NOT having a law like the one the US passed in 1986 has helped to hold back a host of new vaccines from being introduced in THOSE countries.

I don't get it. How does scapegoating and dishonoring Barbara Loe Fisher, the mother of son who was hurt by DPT vaccine, and other parents of children who DIED from DPT vaccine, like Jeff Schwartz, make sense? These parents tried to do the best they could to help other parents of vaccine injured children 25 years ago - and they've made very important contributions - is, IMO, ignorant and cruel. Any mistakes they made were not made because they were trying to hurt children and protect drug companies. That's really a horrendous and outrageous claim.

The responsibility for what has happened to our children should be placed squarely at the foot of those responsible for creating, operating and promoting mandatory vaccination policies: the pharmaceutical industry, public health officials, pediatric organizations and politicians. Not parents like Barbara and Jeff.

Karen

@ Media Scholar - "We are in the midst of an international epidemic."

Very true! And it's not just an epidemic of vaccine-associated brain injury. There is an epidemic of autoimmune diseases affecting more than one organ system, e.g. gastrointestinal, rheumatologic, cardiovascular.

No hypotheses should be removed from the table at this stage. Several VERY promising leads are in play. None of them should be deterred in any way.

"We are in the midst of an international epidemic. Those responsible for investigating and dealing with this epidemic have failed. Among the reasons for this failure is the fact that they are faced with the prospect that they themselves may be responsible for the epidemic. Therefore, in their efforts to exonerate themselves they are an impediment to progress." - Andrew Wakefield, 2002

" The Vaccine Injury Compensation Program: A Failed Experiment in Tort Reform?" http://www.nvic.org/injury-compensation/vaccineinjury.aspx

Sorry, but that whole article is an excuse for what she allowed to happen because she was told beforehand. Honestly, admitting you were wrong would go a lot further than making excuses.

Pamela, Let me try to illustrate it this way.

IF in 2010, the Senate wanted to make a move, and asked ONLY .. oh… Jenny McCarthy and Jim Carey to write legislation involving the safety of vaccines and the lives of millions in the future, wouldn’t you all be saying, “Why isn’t Kent, NVIC and, Dan, and all the many others who have been around for YEARS, and understand the politics of this, doing this collectively?”

So if all those experienced people went to Jenny and Jim and said, “Don’t do this. You don’t have the experience and the knowledge. And if you partner with them you will be shafted and betrayed, and not only will it all turn to custard, it will turn out worse for parents and children than before…,” wouldn’t that be appropriate?

And how would you all feel if Jenny and Jim ignored that, and said, “No we think we can best represent all the people of America. We have the media's attention, and we have the smarts to do this well.”

And if everything panned out as you all predicted, and perhaps worse, how would all you here, commenting on this thread, feel about the wasted expertise and knowledge put to one side, all because Jenny and Jim felt they knew enough to do it better than everyone else?

Who would you want acting on your behalf?

Wouldn’t you want someone experienced, (if they were silly enough) to be co-writing such legislation?

Might not you consider other options?

Perhaps a bottom line demand?

Why do you think that ... instead of all the many very very experienced people in existence available in 1984, ... the senate deliberately asked the least experienced, and most medically and politically malleable of the available co-writers.

They knew the more experienced advocates would drive a very very hard bargain, if indeed they would agreed to be part..., but they also knew the others well enough to know that they might drive a bargain they really wouldn’t like.

Barbara was advised. She could have said no.

So let’s ask the next logical question.

What are the Americans in 2010 going to do about this dog of a legislation?

In my opinion, if it’s not possible to have the vaccine legislation removed from the books, STOP ‘negotiating’ on …. “safe vaccines”. There can never be a “safe” vaccine. Negotiating on the point of safe vaccines does not progress the real issues for parents. It didn’t in 1986, and it’s not going to in 2010.

If parents want to have any “power” whatsoever, they must be able to walk into the doctor and say, “We are delaying for now; we will take out time making our choices, and we might not vaccinate for philosophical reasons”, and your doctor should not be allowed to fire you for that choice.

Along with medical exemptions, have a single nationwide philosophical exemption covering all of USA, as THE fundamental legal right, without all the red tape and character assassination that goes along with state philosophical, religious exemptions. Go one better, and have a new law written where parents have to actively OPT ON to vaccination programmes, rather than opt off.

That’s your baseline.

If Government and vaccine manufacturers want to increase consumer demand they will then have to provide a product which people have confidence in, and want to use, if they chose.

But until parents have the control-switch of the decision making process, neither government, nor vaccine manufacturers will listen to parents.

You will not get that, by continuing to talk about "safe vaccines". The government and manufacturers with indemnity, just sit there, laughing and ride out the hot air, because they have the upper hand.

The advantage the people had in 1984, which had been created by others, and building up well before Barbara even knew there was an issue, was wrested away by the decoy of legislation promising justice and safe vaccines, and delivering neither.

Just as was predicted.

The point of this is not to "point fingers" but to understand history, because he who is ignorant of history is destined to repeat it.


If Barbara had raged and thrown a fit they would have thrown her out. Then we could blame her for that instead. Now we get to blame her for caving in and being sweet.

It was in a no win situation. Why?
Because the whole country, not just Washington D.C wanted their vaccines. The United States citizen did not care if some kids got hurt or died. They just paused a fraction of a second thinking well some'em wrong with the genes, no great lose, don't need such in the gene pool. That is if they even thought that hard.

Pretty much how even my friends did me too.

That is how the whole USA thought, as long as thier kid takes the vaccine and they don't have to miss school, or they did not have to miss work because of a sick kid life was fine,because God loved them best!

One out of 300 would be close to what the DPT was doing to the kids in 1980's, and everyone in the United States did not care. Not only did they not care they were cowards, they stuck their heads in the sand and said it was not happening, and Barbara was one sick weirdo, along with the rest of her organization.

So take what we give you Barbara because that is all you are gett'in and be grateful, yes, thank us, as you lick our shoes.

@ Pamela - I think that you may have misunderstood my comment. I'm not blaming or criticizing BLF. She is a hero...from where I stand.

Not too long ago, in my naivete, I was a victim of vaccine madness. Then came the pandemic flu fraud and hysteria of 2009. That more than any single event, and the very real spectre of forced detentions, quarantines, martial law, and mandated jabs, motivated me to seriously look into the underlying basis for vaccine policy. The more I read, the more shocked I became. The scientific underpinnings are simply appalling.

Early-on, for a brief time, I thought that we could and perhaps should take a nuanced approach to vaccines and consider the safety of each one individually, on the merits.

Once I started looking into the proposed mechanisms (most notably those of Dr Frank Hartman and Dr Andrew Moulden) of vaccine toxicity, it became VERY difficult to deny the scientific and clinical basis, e.g. physical chemistry, biochemistry, pharmacology, toxicology, neurology, and logic behind the assertions that: (a) vaccines are all toxic by one or more mechanisms, (b) their toxicity is likely to be cummulative, and (c) their toxicity is likely to be synergistic.

Finally, I've reached the conclusion that the technology exists to prove these mechanisms of toxicity, i.e., prove that the strong association between vaccines and disease is actually causally-based.

So, with that long-winded disclosure, how could I possibly criticize one of the true pioneers in our movement. Quite the contrary, I applaud her. She has always been our advocate.

"This is an object lesson in why we cannot afford to take a nuanced approach to vaccine safety. Personally, I don't believe that any of them are safe.":

This is exactly why BLF fights so vehemently and centers her state based legislative training around fighting for individual rights over public policy in making medical decisions.

I don't know exactly what went down in 1986 but it seems pretty obvious that BLF did the best she could in a tough situation. Does anyone really believe she fostered the idea of freedom from liability for pharma or parents loosing their day in court. OF course not. She was a consumer advocate for God Sakes.

I would imagine Congress told her what they planned to do (give pharma a liability pass so they would continue making vaccines) and invited her some very limited chance for input because they always have to give the appearance of inviting "public" input.

It seems crazy to me to blame the most seasoned and energetic advocate for vaccine reform and personal choice for all the ills associated with our vaccine program and vaccine court. I'm sure if BLF had her way every person injured by vaccines would have won a hefty settlement and vaccine mandates would not exist at all.

Blaming BLF for the failings of the 1986 VICP is as illogical as blaming the players in David Kirby's book "Evidence of Harm" for the fact that the recommendation by Congress to remove Thimerosal from vaccines has not come to fruition. It's absurd.

Unfortunately advocates don't wield enough power to be held responsible for anything that comes out of Congress. For what ever BLF felt she might have won the day after that legislation was signed just imagine what she wished it might have been... if only she had the power.

@ minority view - "This is actually an object lesson in the dangers of supporting "safer" vaccines."

Very true! This is an object lesson in why we cannot afford to take a nuanced approach to vaccine safety. Personally, I don't believe that any of them are safe.

Even if you eliminate the organomercurial preservatives, detergents, stabilizers, antibiotics, and aluminum adjuvants, we are still left with what could easily prove to be the far greater risk - the unknown risk of horizontal transfection of live viruses, retroviruses, oncogenes (e.g., SV-40), reverse transcriptase, and non-human DNA from species to species.

I didn't arrive at this opinion overnight. It took quite a bit of reading on the subject. The conclusion is inescapable. The proposed mechanisms of vaccine toxicity are robust enough to implicate them all.

While the goal of disease prevention with vaccines is admirable, they fall far short of this goal. Placing our faith in them is seriously misguided. Our collective resources would be better spent promoting healthier diets, lifestyles, nutrition, sanitation, purifying public water, eliminating GMOs and "adventitious presence" of biotech-enhanced events from our food supply.

Breast feeding and vaginal deliveries strengthen our natural immunity. Experiencing some of the classic diseases of childhood may be beneficial to our immune health later in life.

It has become abundantly clear that we cannot just keep adding one new jab after another to the pediatric and adult vaccine schedules, hoping that their cummulative safety risk is simply additive, when in fact the risks are synergistic. Eventually, there is added the straw that finally breaks the camel's back. Up until that time, the signs of toxicity can be acute, subacute, and waxing-and-waning.

There are doubtless some lessens to be learned from the vaccine schedules employed in veterinary medicine. For example, it would be instructive to learn everything we can as to why Prevenile, the first chimeric vaccine of its kind, for West Nile virus in horses, had to be recalled shortly after introduction to the marketplace. Were inflammatory cytokines, e.g. "cytokine storm", involved in the deaths?

This may sound heretical, but I believe that the technology already exists to prove that the strong epidemiologic association between vaccines and disease are causally-related.

Media Scholar

I am not arguing that Barbara was correct in her support. I bet she would say she was not. I am simply saying she is no villain, received no "favors" and her intentions were good.

*** When the VICP was passed, no one ever dreamed that pharma would increase the toddler vaccine program from 10 to 36 shots,
...with 50x to 100x doses of mercury becomming the norm.***

Yes they did. It’s written clearly in submissions to the senate in 1985. The whole intend of the medical professionals involved was precisely that – because the tort system as it was was impeding the introduction of new vaccines. The writing was clearly on the wall, and it was openly discussed both with BLF, and everyone else concerned.

*** First, Barbara did not have the power to get "everything" that parents deserved on this issue and second she could have never predicted the abysmal failure it has become.***

Incorrect. BLF and Jeff Schwartz knew it would be an abysmal failure, because they were warned that that would be the case by just about every person who could warn them. The truth is, that they didn’t **believe** what everyone told them what the outcome could be, because they had been swayed by the medical team assigned to them. Both falsely believed they had the smarts to better a slick PR team which had also been at the heart of the 1974 Swine Flu vaccine indemnity legislation.

Had either BLF of JS believed the words spoken to them, and written to them, then a better understanding of political medicine would have lead them to predict it’s failure and withdraw from co-authoring or supporting its implementation.

That they chose neither to hear the message, or heed the advice from all quarters to back up all the others who disagreed with the legislation, isn't the fault of those who warned her, who were all far more seasoned campaigners than either BLF of JS, who were Jonny-come-latelys when it came to vaccine issues.

Ronald Reagan was totally against the legislation, and as BLF's organisation's newsletter Volume 3 Number 1, Spring 1987, discusses in minute detail, the legislation was only passed because BLF and JS orchestrated mass rolling media pressure and protests.

What this newsletter doesn't state, is that senate roll-over was primarily achieved by a divide and rule mechanism, whereby all those against the legislation were, conveniently for BLF et al, portrayed by the media as zealots and idiots, while BLF and JS were portrayed as only voices of reason, “provaccine people who wanted to save children from sickness”.

That said, if BLF and JS had heeded reason, and backed out and supported everyone else, instead of dividing and ruling, then it's also true to say that the USA might still have that legislation today.

However, I don't happen to believe that would have been the case. But we can’t if and but about that. What is true to say is that had they listened, then everyone would have been on the same page, and no-one would be able to point a finger at anyone.

However, that was very unlikely to happen ever, because the movement had essentially been torn apart by BLF on December 8th 1982; that single action resulting in any sane approach to the future "problem" being scuttled. The very fact that as a result of that action by BLF, Dr Mendelsohn refused to write the forward to “DPT a shot in the dark” and her later support for the legislation made her an implacable enemy of Dr Robert Mendelsohn, speaks as loudly as anything can. For those who actually remember that is. For some this history is a mystery.

To those to whom history isn’t a mysery, they would all know that it took a pretty serious act of perceived betrayal, for ANYONE to be publicly berated by mild mannered Dr Mendelsohn!

BLF and JS may have forgotten about all that, but those of us there at the time have not. And those of us who were there at the time have kept all the written evidence which supports the chain of events stated above. Perhaps BLF has as well. Question is, would she show it to you, if you asked her for it?

Pharma didn't increase the children's vaccine schedule, Hillary Clinton did.

Read up on the Children's Defense Fund and their role in nationalizing Arkansas' childhood vaccine program. As first lady of Arkansas Hillary began the every child by two concept.

Pamela,

Naivety is poor excuse for such long-lasting billage.

Alexander Hamilton said, "A nation which can prefer disgrace to danger is prepared for a master, and deserves one."

A wise man once said, "politics is the business of exchanging favors, justice isn't."

Pamela and cmo,
I know some of the people who talked with BLF when she was campaigning for the VICP. She was warned that it would be bent and she was warned that it would lead to an increase in vaccines. The second point should have been obvious to all concerned, actually. If you have a line of products with guaranteed protection from lawsuits, why not expand in that area?

Did you read the article that Media Scholar dug up? It is clear that 1)BLF wanted to support the vaccine program and 2)She was pushing hard to get this act passed.

This is actually an object lesson in the dangers of supporting "safer" vaccines.

When the VICP was passed, no one ever dreamed that pharma would increase the toddler vaccine program from 10 to 36 shots,

...with 50x to 100x doses of mercury becomming the norm.

Barbara Loe Fisher has made it abundantly clear that the 1986 act that created the vaccine court has not lived up to it's original intent and no one is more unhappy with the outcome than she is.

Here is a lengthy position statement she recently wrote on the program's failures called, The Vaccine Injury Compensation Program: A Failed Experiment in Tort Reform? http://www.nvic.org/injury-compensation/vaccineinjury.aspx

First, Barbara did not have the power to get "everything" that parents deserved on this issue and second she could have never predicted the abysmal failure it has become.

Read the intent of VICP here:

http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=9z4dAAAAIBAJ&sjid=oKYEAAAAIBAJ&pg=5669,8058259&dq=national+childhood+vaccine&hl=en

"...while preserving a parent's Constitutional right to sue for vaccine injuries."

It also clearly states that authorities already knew that vaccines kill babies and cause brain damage (Autism).

Wonder why California is pushing the Whooping Cough? Read this editorial.

Barbara Loe Fisher was among the groups pressuring Ronald Reagan to aid the vaccine manufacturing drug companies.

This editorial contains her talking points.

http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=ngwhAAAAIBAJ&sjid=U3IFAAAAIBAJ&pg=2663,7095446&dq=national+childhood+vaccine&hl=en

Thank you for this explanation of the Starr and Chemerinsky brief.

Will this Supreme Court hearing possibly address in some way the problematic reality of governmental agencies or departments, essentially financed by the use of a product or by the makers of such a product, deciding not only what is "unavoidably unsafe" in their own special court, but also "recommending" (with arm twisting that sometimes goes so far as mandating) the administration of such a product to its citizens/customers/victims in the first place?

Wow, this is amazing! I wonder what motivated Mr. Starr & Mr. Chemerinsky to get involved in this matter.

Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

Kent stated, "...regardless of whether you're conservative or liberal you believe that not only are doctors not God, they're not angels, either."

How timely. Today's Minneapolis Star Tribune reported on a University of Minnesota expert on pediatric infectious diseases who violated privacy laws and viewed the medical records of his ex-wife and estranged children. The family claims they were harrassed. The doctor's punishment? A lecture.

As long as vaccine science remains an ongoing experiment, no one belongs on a pedestal -- and no one should be above the law.


This is written very well and explains the importance of this case to people who care in a way they can understand. Fabulous job! Thank you.

As for blaming Ronald Reagan for the vaccine court? You can thank Barbara Loe Fisher for that stinking piece of steaming crap.

http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=d3AsAAAAIBAJ&sjid=kooFAAAAIBAJ&pg=1621,10575765&dq=national+childhood+vaccine&hl=en

"For the first time, vaccine damage has been recognized in this country, said Barbara Loe Fisher, vice president of the national Dissatisfied Parents Together group, said Monday. "Now we look forward to having the safest vaccine available. This is a historic event."

SEE ALSO:

http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=d3AsAAAAIBAJ&sjid=kooFAAAAIBAJ&pg=1621,10575765&dq=national+childhood+vaccine&hl=en

Thank you Jeff C. Very well put. "Big Business enabled and protected by Big Government" And anyone who doesn't believe they are equally enabled by both parties is naive.

Our community has friends and enemies on both sides of the isle. They are easy to name on both counts. As patron99 pointed out, we need to have to have faith that the court will live up to the standard of equal protection and equal treatment under the law.

For those who want to believe that only conservatives are financially influenced by big business then you must also believe that only conservatives support states rights because I could lamb bast liberals on the excessive power of federal government but that would be equally naive. I.E. you could just as much assume the conservative judges will be our friends on states rights as our enemies in support of big business. I hold the court to a higher standard to uphold law and set aside ideology.

Here! Here! Jeff C. - Well-stated. Vaccine policy transcends party affiliation, and yes, we need all the help we can get. It's "time to circle the wagons".

There are several very pro-pharma statutes which should be reached by the high courts, e.g., IMHO (a non-attorney), the PDUFA is unconstitutional in violation of 5th Amendment Equal Protection and 9th Amendment Equal Treatment under Law.

We need every legally-trained mind enlisted to help stem the tidal wave of parenteral biologics that is bearing down on us, e.g. one-size fit all jabs, immuno-drugs, cancer and STD inoculations, and nanotech vaccines.

To David Taylor,
Normally I would completely agree but I'm fairly certain that Roberts has recused himself from this case because of his holdings in Pfizer/Wyeth. A small ray of hope?

This is not a right / left issue and commenters that insist on portraying it as such, are not only annoying, but also commit a tremendous disservice to the cause. The right wing / left ring rants make those that might be sympathetic to our issue tune us out. Tirades about neocons or “rightist, corporate majorities” do nothing to advance the argument, but do cause the 41% of Americans that call themselves conservative to dismiss our cause as partisan hack nonsense.

Kent went to great lengths to point out this is not a liberal/conservative issue as Starr and Chemerinsky are ideological polar opposites. Two of our community’s best friends were stalwart conservatives, Rep. Burton, and Rep Weldon. On the liberal side, we have great friends in Sen. Harkin and Rep. Maloney.

The issue here is crony capitalism, i.e. Big Business enabled and protected by Big Government. It is the worst of both worlds, we have government forcing us to purchase and consume a product we don’t want, while also indemnifying the business from liability. We have business exploiting their unique status afforded by government to increase revenues without repercussions. Say what you will about the situation, but it is neither conservative nor liberal in an ideological sense.

We need as many friends as we can get in this fight. The partisan cheap shots don’t help.

This is awesome! From the brief: "The judgment should be reversed." Can't say it any plainer than that! :)

Dr. King, thx for the link, I haven't had any luck with the link on CoMed. And I have wanted to read this...

David Taylor, I think you may be underestimating Clarence Thomas, at least. He has a history of disagreeing with Scalia, particularly when it comes to interpreting what the Founding Fathers meant when they wrote the Constitution. Also, the "right" tends to side with "states' rights" arguments when it comes to conflict between states and the federal government. I think Reagan betrayed generations of children when he signed the Vaccine Injury Compensation Act, but I don't think we can put all the blame on Republicans. I'm still hopeful about the outcome of this case, and I'm looking forward to Kent's continuing coverage of it. Let's all hope together...

Starr will have the neocons squirming, because he's right. All of them are hard core federalists, and no one knows that space better than Starr. There is a chance they will find in his favor, but then I would predict that if the case is remanded and the issue of design defect adjudicated, the vaccine will be found to be "safe" (i.e. no design defect will be found). Pharma has their "14 studies" lined up to show just that. The only consolation in that case is that Pharma will be kept on its back heels for awhile longer, pissed off and continuing to have to spend boatloads on lawyers. But still no justice for the kids.

Perhaps the courts can rescue us from this nightmare of epidemic disease! Otherwise, they may one day find themselves to be patients (victims) too, unless they live in jab-proof, GMO-proof, hermetically-sealed bubbles.

Who would ever have anticipated that organized crime, crimes against humanity, and a police state, accurately describe "sick care" under pharma today?

Under pharma's direct influence, orthodox medicine is causing more disease than curing or preventing, with their xenobiotic agenda. Typically, whoever chooses to go rogue, and not play along, is attacked professionally and marginalized, by their peers, mainstream medical establishment, and mainstream media.

It's now beyond disgusting! It's enough to make cynics of us all. Indifference to the status quo is now tantamount to complicity. By complacency, we have lost control over our health to people who certainly do not have our best interests at heart.

Vaccine court is unconstitutional. Toyota court? Firestone tire court? Vioxx court? Tainted Tylenol court? BP oil spill court? McDonald's hot coffee court?

Very good points above, Kerbob.

Is Dr. Verstraten in DC to help out with the Glaxo /sk Avadia hearings ???

Kent and all, for an alternate view of the issues please read the article at:

http://dr-king.com/docs/20100402_BruesewitzV_WyethFinal_b.pdf

As a matter of fact I think that having to purchase now available epilepesy medicine NOW for BOTH of my kids from these very same drug companies that produced these vaccines "is like the man is down on the ground - let us kick him again!"

I do not expect justice for what the vaccines did to my family, I am done even worrying about it.

We pretty much were on the table of vaccine injuries even way back in the 80's, but finding a lawyer, or doing it ourselves all was just too hard. Plus - The words "You will be Suing the Federal Government" ---- are you kidding!!!!

It was daunting enough to sue a big drug company, and then have the really big guns step in between the victim and the victimizer!

Oh it sounded great. The rules sounded really pretty. Tax everyone so they can pay for those damaged by vaccines, since it is such a small number there will be plenty of money,(I trusted that there were people in the court system that understood) well they were like a lot of people out in the real world, vaccines are safe and these people that believe differently are screwballs. Oh look here comes another screwball wanting free hand out. I guess that tax money of vaccine injuries are ina freezer somewhere.

But of course that was not the only problem, the main problme, the real, big , sure enough problem was they were putting a bandaid on top of skin cancer.

They never even tried to find out what was causing these problems with some people and could care less. Now the drug companies standing behind their big Uncle, could be as sloppy as they pleased. No need to worry, think too hard, be inventive, all they had to do was churn out as many vaccines as possible for every disease they could possibly come up with. If the public never heard of the diseae all they had to do was turn to big Uncle and explain to the intellects of CDC, FDA, or NIH how really, really important it is to include this vaccine for a third world country diseaes. All they have to do is sit back and make money by producing soddy vaccines for every little known illnes So 20 years later and the 1 out of 300 (just a guess) to now 1 out of 99 or 94 or 88 or well it is gett'in bigger.

IF THERE IS A CURE THESE SAME VACCINE COMPANIES WILL BE RAKING IN THE CASH!

THE NEXT BIG COURT FIGHT - -- LET US MAKE THEM GIVE THAT DRUG "FREE"

I do not want to give lots of money to Connaugh now part of Merck I think money to cure a disease that they had a hand in delivering to my family in the first place.

How do we know these already bought and proven to be loyal to the establishment lawyers are angels? To me,,, I wonder if the permanent fix is in. What will happen if this doesn't go our way... will the vaccine companies then have more rights to invade our bodies with neurotoxins? I'm to the point where I don't trust anyone

This whole thing is absurd. How anyone can seriously defend injecting poison into the human body is ridiculous. Vaccines are a complete hoax.

The long term "safety" studies of vaccination has been done. The first generation vaccinated in the 1930's and implanted with amalgam fillings is in awful health. Look around at all the baby boomers they are all suffering from diabetes, heart disease, cancer and alzheimers.

Kent--you left out five essential facts in your otherwise excellent analysis: Roberts, Alito, Scalia, Thomas and Kennedy.

Whatever the decision of this rightist, corporatist majority, it will do little to push the law toward more accountability for Big Pharma.

Ain't. Gonna. Happen.

Great post, Kent! I'm not sure that many state AGs have enough background knowledge of this topic to write a good amici curiae brief. Have YOU considered writing one? We need to enlighten those who sit on the bench of the high court as to the full ramifications of vaccine madness. I've got to believe that these justices might themselves be somewhat apprehensive that they might one day be victim (inadvertently inoculated) of a government-mandated jab.

Certain entrepeneurs are said to be designing genetically-engineered mosquitoes to act as flying syringes to administer beneficial jabs to the masses. You can't make this stuff up! We need to wake up! We're running out of time.

http://www.naturalnews.com/028887_vaccines_Bill_Gates.html

http://www.naturalnews.com/026434_vaccines_vaccination_vaccinations.html

Have ANY State Attorney Generals filed "amci curiae" or "friend of the court" briefs in support of Starr and Chermerinsky? If not .. why not?

After all, who represents the people if not their own State Attorney Generals?

Vaccine court is unconstitutional. Toyota court? Firestone tire court? Vioxx court? Tainted Tylenol court? BP oil spill court? McDonald's hot coffee court?

Never heard of it.

Vaccine court is like France after the revolution. Bolshevism. Justice has become the orphan of the storm.

Vaccine court is biased beyond fair. The court is bigotry and prejudice gone wild.

Hijacking civil claims then crying because there's too many cases to deal with?

Meanwhile, in the UK we only have a pathetic discretionary vaccine compensation scheme, and the redress of the courts is entirely notional against any pharmaceutical injury. Not only was it impossible to mount a prosecution against MMR because there was no public funding (and that ultimately was the only reason) we couldn't even mount a prosecution against Vioxx:

http://www.bmj.com/cgi/eletters/340/feb02_4/c672#234098

Of course, we have theoretical rights but all pharmaceuticals in the UK are administered to all intents and purposes at the risk of the patient.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.