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Deadly Choices - Paul's Porkies

Earth-man-large-bottomWe invite you to read this powerful  post from "Hilary's Desk" at the blog Beyond Conformity.

A few days ago, I set my husband a task. To read Paul Offit’s book called, “Deadly Choices How the anti-vaccine movement threatens us all” By half way through he was unamused. Beguiled by his sighs of discontent, I decided to stop my current track of writing. and start reading. Naturally I started with the Prologue, where the first sentence read; “There’s a war going on out there – a quiet, deadly war.”

Journalistically, this is called “setting the scene” – grab people by the scruff of the neck, and tell them what the problem is. A deadly war. “Why is that?” you will ask. The prologue meanders for a few lines discussing the "goodies", and then pouncing on the "baddies" who threaten us all, ... in this deadly war. Line 16 contains the punchline: “Some (parents) aren’t giving any vaccines at all; since 1991, the percentage of unvaccinated children has more than doubled”.

Now this is interesting, because – it’s NOT the truth. How do I know? I was in the USA in 1990, and 1993. 1993 was particularly interesting for two reasons:

1) I fell down a stairwell in Atlanta, in November 1993.  Inside an Atlanta hospital a large poster appealed greatly to me. A helpful soul nicked it for me.
2) I came back with a load of newspaper clippings about how bad the USA vaccination rate was, and... what Bill Clinton was going to do about it.

So here’s the poster, for anyone with a memory to go back that far. Remember this?

A group called “Kiwanis” International, whose public relations director was David L. Blackmer, set up 7,000 Kiwani clubs in the USA, with the slogan, “All Their Shots, While They’re Tots”.  So this is where Clinton lent his young smiley dial to the poster. The campaign included TV ads, bill-boards, and paper advertisements featuring the President with the message “In some urban neighbourhoods less than half the children under 2 years old are fully immunized against polio, diphtheria, measles, mumps, and several other vaccine preventable diseases.” During that year Kiwanis spent 17.6 million dollars on that campaign.

Paul Offit must have known the slogan, since he’s recycled it onto Amanda Peet’s doorstep as she’s now the spokesperson for the group founded in 1991, called “Every Child by two” and partners with Dr Offit on this website .

The history of the Clinton poster above goes back to 1991, the very year Paul Offit is talking about, so let’s look at a few facts from that year.

There was a measles “epidemic” in which nearly half of the deaths were in vaccinated children, according to one newspaper article. Though today, those children would be classified as “unvaccinated”. It was this measles epidemic which resulted in the recommendation to add a second MMR shot into the schedule, something New Zealand did in 1991 as well. But in those days, “one shot” was classified as “vaccinated”.

A publication called American Medical News, August 12, 1991, page 6, ran an item on a paediatrician survey conducted by the American Academy of Pediatrics. Academy President, Dr Antoinette Parisi Eaton was quoted as saying that the 10% of American children not vaccinated for measles, represented 8 million children at risk of contracting the disease. She was also upset at the 64% vaccination rate for Haemophilus, 84% for pertussis, and 86% for rubella. However, her figures were an over-estimate.

The Journal of American Medical Association set the tone for Governmental intervention on September 11, 1991, with an excoriating item in JAMA which starts out saying:

“What do Bolivia, Haiti and the United States have in common?

They have the worst immunization rates for children aged 2 years or younger in the Western Hemisphere.”

(So where does that leave Paul Offit’s claim that the numbers of unvaccinated has doubled since then?)

The article continues discussing the “National Immunization Campaign”. Quoting Dr Daniel Shea, the Academy of Pediatrics Vice President, saying that the society hoped to “find the resolve and the commitment” to protect the country’s children from these “deadly, crippling, vaccine preventable diseases”.

....Does that sound like every vaccine defender’s dream to use as a starting point to explain why things were so “good” then, and are turning to custard now?

Samual Katz and Walter Orenstein et al, (including perhaps, Dr Offit himself? ) trudged off to have a natter in Bill Clinton’s ear with the result that on 4th January 1993, the Clinton Administration announced a $1 billion-a-year programme, to immunize all of the nation’s children against a wide range of diseases, citing Public Health official estimates that, “only 37 to 56 Percent of the nation’s four million 2-year olds were fully vaccinated”. (Washington Post, 4/1/93; “Administration to Provide Free vaccines for Children” by Spencer Rich.)

On April 21, 1993, the New York Times weighed in with an article called “A Shot in the (wrong) arm” by P. Roy Gagelos, re-iterating that only 55% of children were fully vaccinated by 2 years of age, and that immunisation rates for the 11 states which provided free vaccines averages only 63%, compared with 58% for states without such programmes.

........  So this is Paul Offit’s utopial benchmark, eh?!!

As if to reinforce how bad things were in 1991, JAMA continued to intone messages of woe in 1994  saying, “Since 1989, severe outbreaks of measles, pertussis, and other vaccine preventable diseases have made low immunization rates among preschool children a serious concern.” It also stated that MMWR 1994:43:556 – 559 stated that;

 “only 72% of 2 year olds had completed the basic series of immunizations”.

If numbers of unvaccinated have doubled since 1991, why do some provaccine drones who echo every "Offit- mantra", now consider a study of vaccinated and never vaccinated children could never be done? they say.... there just aren’t high enough numbers now, for even a miniscule never-vaccinated control group: 

In 2004, Smith et al published “Children who have received no vaccines: Who are they and where do they live?”. This was an extensive study of vaccination practices in the US, carried out from 1995 to 2001 on over 23,000 children selected at random to be representative of the larger population. Their results were interesting and bear directly on the desire to “put on a study” looking at the connection (or lack thereof) between vaccines and autism.

What they found was that 62.8% of their study population was “fully vaccinated” (i.e. had received all the vaccines on the then-current vaccination schedule - 15 total in 2001). An additional 36.9% were “undervaccinated” - although 58.5% of them (20.4% of the total sample) were missing only one vaccine. Only 0.3% of the sample - 111 children ages 19 - 35 months over five years - had not received any vaccination.

So which is it to be, Dr Offit?

Were 0.3 % of US children in 2004 unvaccinated?

What’s that rate now?

Is is twice as bad as it was in 1991?

Is a vaccinated/never vaccinated study impossible to do?

Has the percentage of unvaccinated children more than doubled since 1991?  

If as all your mates contend, it’s impossible to do a vaccinated /never vaccinated study now, then the whole foundational premise of your “deadly war” book falls flat on its face.



Cynthia Cournoyer

Vaccination rates in preschoolers has gone up. When it was 40%, they blamed preschoolers for every outbreak. When they got that up to about 80% and school-age up to about 98%, they said adults should get boosters now; add pertussis to adults, add pertussis to tetanus shots post-injury. Now outbreaks are blamed on "imported" cases from other countries. Running out of excuses why you can vaccinate for 40 to 70 years and still have outbreaks?

History is important. When some vaccines were first introduced, a vaccination rate of about 64% was considered enough to "develop herd immunity." As vaccines keep failing, this rate has been continually revised up. When some vaccines were first introduced, one dose was considered life long protection. When the DPT was first introduced, it was "dangerous" to give a booster past age 7, and besides, it instilled life long protection. Today, we don't get those guarantees that were first given. All we get is a continuous recommendation of boosters and adult vaccines.

When will the clock run out? Aren't vaccines supposed to "wipe out" disease? When can you say you tried and it just didn't work? Two hundred years? The finish line keeps moving! And the clock keeps ticking.


It is only a matter of time before the "Wizard of Offit" can no longer pull levers from behind a curtain and continue to fool all the Dorthy's of America. (& Mr. Dorthy's and grandpa and grandma Dorthy's )

We are far past that point already.

tony bateson

Until the vaccinated vs unvaccinated research is done by a credible body I maintain my mantra is true. Unvaccinated = unautistic. I also happen to believe it will not only be true but proven by any such conclusive research.

Tony Bateson, Oxford, UK.

Heidi N

Paul Offit is correct about the "war" part. And frankly, the strategy of calling people anti-vaxers, crazy, and baby-killers isn't going to lead him and those he represents to win the war. It just makes him and those he represents look "not-nice," and desperate. Looks to me like they spend way too much time on their criticizing campaign and not enough time on their vaccine safety research campaign. Geez, is there anyone out there who is suppose to be regulating such nonsense? Or is that the problem, is there no one ensuring that the vaccine manufactures are running a safe program?

Elizabeth Gillespie

Given that much of the USA is made up of god-fearing fundamentalist/pentecostal/born-again/Sarh Palin loving Christians I would be interested in the numbers who are aware of 'abortion remnants' in the vaccinations they give their babies. Are they aware? If not why not? I understand they number in the tens of millions. Where are their united voices on this topic?

Cherry Sperlin Misra

You know Codfish, some fine day when you suffer some terrible medical injury ( Lets just say, for the sake of saying something- Your child suffers severe abdominal pain day and night and is losing weight, like Dr. Wakefield's patients) ...Well, then you decide to present a legal plea and you need an expert witness- maybe someone who knows something about gastroenterology and has an excellent reputation so that he impresses the court . Well, on that fine day lets hope you can find someone like Dr. Wakefield to testify on your behalf and is willing to just simply tell the truth as he saw it. Good luck to you. The way things are going there may not be anyone left to testify for YOU.
You may be surprised to know that American pediatricians are rather baffled about the Wakefield charges. They are beginning to understand autistic enterocolitis and cant fathom why the British are pursuing someone for saying something exists , which obviously does exist. Do yourself a favor and watch Dr. Wakefield on Youtube.

Media Scholar

he was PAID by lawyers to find a link between MMR and autism in order to support a lawsuit being brought by 4 of the parents of the children involved in his study against big pharma.
And in your mind it would be OK if he was working for the CDC anti-litigation bloc of Autism research...just sitting by the pool waiting for the jack to flow in?

That's really warped.

If you knew how much money Autism Speaks is laundering for the CDC and US Department of Justice you'd puke.


Here’s a little reference point, directly from the CDC. Their earliest data starts tracking in 1994 and it’s clear to see that when comparing the vaccination rates of US 19 to 35 month olds, the rates have increased even with the ever-growing vaccination schedule. The list below (and all other CDC stats) is good starting poing when contradicting the mantra that vaccination rates are falling to record lows.

4 DTP, 3 Polio, 1 measles-containing vaccine
1994 – 71.3%

≥4 doses of DTP/DT/DTaP, ≥3 doses of poliovirus vaccine, ≥1 doses of measles-containing vaccine, ≥3 doses of hepatitis B vaccine, and ≥1 doses of varicella vaccine
2005- 76.6%
2006 -77.6%
2007- 78.3%
2008 -78.7%
2009 -77.5%

Jeff C.

Codfish and Notan,

Not sure if you are commenting to me, but WTF are you guys talking about? Nobody said anything about not trusting those who you hire, my comment was regarding government edicts. Specifically, government telling people they must do something under force of law. That type of power is inherently corrupting and should only be used when absolutely necessary. When government does use it, we the people have an obligation to ensure it is being used in good faith. When the government says "the science is settled" we have a a right to see for ourselves.

We can pick and choose who we hire, and are free to fire them if we aren't satisfied (including your doctor). Try firing the CDC.

If you're going to construct strawmen, at least make them rational.


Very interesting post. I've see these type of stats before, but not ones so obvious. I think there's an effort in the medical establisment to feed the media "vaccine rates are at a record low".
I'm talking classes at a health sciences college and one of my prof. said "vaccination rates are at a 50 year low". I for a fact know that the rates are at record highs. The number of children not vaccinating for certain diseases is decreasing, however, the number of exemptions filed for those cases is increasing. It's only an increase in the exemptions (paperwork) filed, not an increase in non-vaccination.



What if instead of a global pandemic of deadly infectious disease, we had a global pandemic of immune dysfunction that became transmissible, with humans or animals or insects as the vector? Impossible? Are we willing to bet our lives on it? Are the CDC and WHO inadvertently, or otherwise, leading us down a path to extinction with their global vaccine “madness” and “engineering” of the food supply? We should have no doubt that they are playing-God in their creation of artificial life-forms. This is an epitome of arrogance and hubris. Our Creator may have something to say about this.

Can we mathematically model immune resistence versus immune susceptibility, as a finite quantity that changes over time on a global population-basis? What if over time our immune susceptibility outpaced our immune resistence?

Do the eugenicists and ruling elites know for certain, that the population will simply stabilize at the ideal global population size? Emperor Bill is correct. By vaccinating the world, the population will undoubtedly decrease. But what if the population just kept decreasing year after year, due to a net sum gain in immune susceptibility and reproductive dysfunction?

How certain are we that our immune resistence and our reproductive capacity could ever be restored once a certain threshold in immune susceptibility and reproductive dysfunction was exceeded? What if vaccine-induced enhancement of infection and diseases and systemic automimmunity became transmissible by human, animal, or insect vectors? What if the transmissible factor, e.g. a labvirus, became airborne? What if the vaccine schedules surpass our self-organized criticality, by repeated immunization with antigen and over-stimlation of the human immune system? Is our self-organized criticality recoverable once it has been surpassed? What if systemic autoimmunity and cancers became transmissible, transgenerational, diseases? How many such diseases could our species tolerate?



The description you've posted as to the lawsuit issue with Wakefield is factually incorrect.

Wakefield has outlined, almost ad nauseum, what happened with that lawsuit. He gave a detailed, precise description behind the entire issue during an interview conducted by Dr. Mercola. You can view that entire interview at Youtube.

It is very sad for me to read this sort of misinformation, in any post -- anywhere -- about the Wakefield story. If you sincerely believe what you have posted, please do consider researching this issue more in depth.

Dr. Wakefield did absolutely nothing wrong. I'd like to see anyone stand up to the scrutiny of the type this courageous physician has had to endure. Dr. Wakefield is to be commended for his work with these children and their families (btw-ALL of those families have continued to stand by Dr. Wakefield).

Dr. Wakefield is not anti-vaccine, but what his work with these families has shown, is that more research needs to be done in order to determine what happens to some of these children post-vaccination. Vaccine safety and efficacy issues ultimately affect you, me, our parents, grandparents, and our children -- everywhere.

Big Pharma and those of whom hide behind its mantel, may try to besmirch Dr. Wakefield, but in the end when all is said and done, and perhaps when none of us are around any longer, the Truth behind the vaccine safety/efficacy issue will be made known for what it is.

The vaccine issue will NOT go away until truth, NOT arrogance, prevails in our medical and scientific fields. It wasn't all that long ago that Americans could view on their television sets a family friendly physician touting the benefits of certain cigarette brands, as unbelievable as that may seem today.

Today, of course, the reality behind the tobacco industry's science is now known. There is no denying that smoking for many does cause cancer. But what a fight the tobacco industry put up to deny this very fact.

Arrogance needs to be taken out of the equation; arrogance is no substitute for Truth. There should be no fear whatsoever, for anyone on either side of this equation, in discussing the vaccine safety/efficacy issue. But it takes a courageous and gifted spirit, to do so.


My daughter was vaccinated with MMR following her first birthday. Within 10 days she had a fever and a rash. My pediatrician said she got the measles from the vaccination. The year was 1993. No one ever asked me if I was vaccinated or had the disease. I was seven months pregnant. Luckily, I actually had the disease, so I had a real immunity. Amazingly, her pediatricians insisted that she get a booster and never checked titers when she was five. Apparently she had a rare reaction. I wish I could get so lucky with the lottery.

Notan Expert

Does your doctor make money from treating your child? Her opinion doesn't count! Do the places you buy supplements from make money from them? What do they know! Do you make money from your job? You clearly are unqualified to have any opinions about your field!



To Codfish:
The principal difference between dr. Offit and dr. Wakefield is, that Offit is recognized by most American parents as the main enemy of their children, but Wakefield is considered by parents to be the savior and protector of their children. Parents know best, whom to trust and whom to ignore and despise.

Codfish Aristocracy

Hey Jeff, can we also apply your method of dealing with Offit to Andrew Wakefield, as any information that he provides is bound to be tainted by the fact that he was PAID by lawyers to find a link between MMR and autism in order to support a lawsuit being brought by 4 of the parents of the children involved in his study against big pharma.

Just some food for thought...


Can anybody explain to me why isn't the MIND institute conducting the vaccinated vs. unvaccinated study?

I was under the impression that MIND was founded by 'good' money, parents of autistic kids who were part of the early 2000's epic battles to raise awareness to the autism epidemic and its root causes.

It's seems that studies coming out of MIND just dance around THE ISSUE but they never actually tackle it.

Jeff C.

Joyous - what a great point about regarding trust in the government.

As a conservative, I frequent and comment on conservative political blogs. I'm amazed how uninformed my fellow conservatives are regarding this issue. They don't trust the government edicts on scientific issues such as health care decisions or global warming. In my opinion, the skepticism is warranted as the opportunities for corruption are limitless. Yet, they completely trust the CDC and blanket statements from Kathleen Sebelius regarding the safety of administering seven to nine vaccine doses at once. The vaccinators have done an effective job painting us as lunatic-fringe kooks, many of our natural allies think we're nut jobs. Upon discussion, they are usually shocked to learn of the schedule's explosive growth, most had no idea.

Thanks to Hilary Butler for relentlessly fighting the good fight. She was a lone voice in the wilderness for many years yet continued to speak out. People are finally listening, it is a national disgrace that it took millions of sick kids to do it.


Here's how Offit should be dealt with
"Do you profit from vaccines?"
"Then your opinion doesn't count. Next expert please....."
That is all that should be said to him over and over and over. It should be the talking point,, the mantra,,,

What really cracks me up is all the people in the US who don't trust government with their healthcare system,,, But they are ready willing and able to put government in charge of shooting crap into their children early and often... dead baby remnants included (mmr human diploid cells)

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