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An Open Letter to: Gabriel Munroe, Editor-in-Chief, Issue 23, Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy

ReissBy Christina Waldman

April 9, 2014

Re:  Who Controls the Conversation?  Ethical Concerns in Dorit Rubenstein Reiss, "Compensating the Victims of Failure to Vaccinate:   What are the Options?" 23 Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy (forthcoming 2014)

Dear Mr. Monroe,

In the past year, Prof. Reiss has burst upon the blogosphere as a vigorous promoter of vaccines and public health policies favorable to vaccine interests.  As advocating for vaccines in social media is not something most law professors normally do in their spare time, and  to the extent that she does, some have questioned the independence of her motivation.  Might she have conflicts of interest to disclose?  See:

"Not Paid To Post?" Dorit Rubinstein Reiss, UC Hastings College of Law and Kaiser Permanente

Who Is Dorit Reiss?

Dorit Rubinstein Reiss and the Benefits of Agency Capture: The Latest Vaccine Industry Advocate

Voices for Vaccines III: The Opinions and Silences of Dorit Reiss

Dorit Rubinstein Reiss and the Weakness of Vaccine Science  et al at AgeofAutism.com. 

After all, despite their arguable benefits, vaccines have become a profitable health industry, with the global vaccine market currently worth $30 billion.  (“Global Vaccine Market (Human and Animal) Pipeline Analysis now Available at ReportsnReports.com, 1/26/14. ) The new version of Gardasil, if approved, is expected to net $1.9 billion.  

As you know, Mr. Monroe, academicians are held to high standards of fair and objective communication.   You have informed me that you are unaware of any standards for conflicts of interest specific to the Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy.  The Cornell Journal of Open Access to Law gives this  standard:  “All authors should disclose in their manuscripts any financial or other substantive conflict of interest that might be construed to influence the results or interpretation of their manuscript.  All sources of financial support for the project should be disclosed. . . ”  (under “Publication Ethics and Publication Malpractice”).

Late last year, while Merck was making application to the FDA for licensing of “V503,” the new nine-strain version of its HPV vaccine, Gardasil, a battle was going on in the comment section of the KatieCouric.com blog, “HPV Vaccine Conversation Continued,”  over the safety and effectiveness of Gardasil (after Katie’s show addressed Gardasil safety concerns on Dec. 4, 2013).  Prof. Reiss aggressively promoted the benefits of Gardasil in comments at this blog and elsewhere, assuring readers that Gardasil is “very, very safe” and that “There is no credible evidence” of any significant risk of serious side effects--despite the many reports of serious injuries to young girls.  Katie Couric HPV Conversation; Japan HPV Adverse Event Symposium; TruthAboutGardasil.org; FierceVaccines.com - Merck Warns Of Drop in Japanese Gardasil.  

In response to being asked whether she wrote all the comments with her name on them, Prof. Reiss said yes, and she claimed full responsibility for them (Dorit Reiss, 12/22/13 comment to Vince Brown).  Some of them sound more like they were written by a law student than a law professor.  In fact, there have been so many “Dorit Reiss” comments, at so many blogs and websites, at all hours of the day and night, sometimes posted only a minute apart, that it seems unlikely for just one person to have made them all.   See, e.g., Disqus.com/DoritReiss andDisqus.com/dorit_reiss  Some have wondered if there is a “bot.”

When, at the KatieCouric “HPV blog,” Prof. Reiss was asked whether she were being compensated for her voluminous commenting as a vaccine advocate, she responded:  “Not really.  My law school would pay me the same salary whether or not I post here.” (Dec. 8, 2013.  Of note, comments at that site, including this one, had a tendency to “disappear” or get rearranged completely out of chronological order; a whole week’s worth of comments seemed to simply disappear at one point, from 12/11 to 12/27/13. By 4/4/14, only 3,849 comments remain up.   According to a recent article at KevinMD.com, Global Prairie, a public relations/marketing firm, digitally captured 12,049 posts within a 22-day window.  Dr. Natasha Burgert, “Analyzing the Katie Couric effect on the vaccine conversation,” 2/18/14 ).

On February 4, 2013, Prof. Reiss again responded, “….As is easy see I'm an academic in a law school. My income would not be affected by posting online in any way. And in case you missed it, I use my real name.” (Retrieved 2/27/14 8:36 p.m.)  When questioned about conflicts, Prof. Reiss to my knowledge has made no conflicts disclosure other than to deny financial payment from pharmaceutical companies.    

Both Kaiser Permanente (the largest not-for-profit health maintenance organization in the United States”  and a national leader in vaccine research)

and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have produced limited studies affirming the [relative] safety of the HPV vaccine. The two Kaiser studies (2012) were funded by Merck, while the CDC’s study (2011) was performed by Kaiser, with the same lead researcher involved in all three studies, Kaiser Vaccine Study Center’s Dr. Nichola KleinKaiser Permanente’s CEO, Robert Pearl, advocates universal vaccination.  (4/1/14, republished from Forbes.com).

Dr. Anne Schuchat, M.D., director of the CDC’s Center for Global Health, assured the viewing public that Gardasil was safe  in a subsequent Katie Couric show, after the organized outcry that Katie’s show had been biased in favor of Gardasil victims.  See (article by Tara Haelle, curiously mentioning a “widely-distributed” email she had received from the CDC giving advance notice of Dr. Schuchat’s appearance.  Tara also listed Prof. Reiss’s piece in her list of articles on the subject.)

In spite of relatively low cervical cancer rates compared to the pre pap-screen era, the CDC actively promotes the HPV vaccine, Gardasil.  

Government call for more HPV vaccination could boost GSK and Merck

Merck readies FDA submission for son of Gardasil

Why is the CDC Ignoring Explosion of Recorded HPV Vaccine Injuries, as Other Countries Move to Take Protective Action?

 For a suggested explanation,  see Gardasil: A License to Kill How A Public-Private Partnership Made the Government Merck’s Gardasil Partner

It is not clear whether Prof. Reiss ever wrote professionally about vaccines before June 24, 2013 when she jumped into the fray on the side of bioethicist Art Caplan against attorney Mary Holland.   Although her article in your journal will be her first published professional piece on a vaccine issue, her law school  is already touting her as a “leading expert on failure to vaccinate.”    

What can be discerned from the record is that Prof. Reiss is an “Affiliated Faculty” of the University of California at San Francisco/UC Hastings Consortium on Law, Science and Health Policy, a collaborative venture of University of California Hastings College of the law with the University of California at San Francisco (UCSF), one of the world’s top medical centers and “the only UC campus devoted solely to health science.”  .  UCSF is the second largest employer in San Francisco, with the Bay area reportedly the third largest in the world in terms of biotechnology workforce.    

The Consortium has a stated purpose of advancing “health and science through informed law and policy.”   “Bridging Law and Science.”  One could imagine situations in which the Consortium’s agenda might conflict with independent academic choice.  

Besides benefitting from  interdisciplinary graduate degree programs and internships/externships with UCSF and Kaiser Permanente , the law school faculty of the Consortium will apparently have a role in furthering the interests  of the new Center for Transdisciplinary ELSI Research in Translational Genomics (CT2G), “a novel resource for ethical, legal, social and policy analysis of emerging issues in translational genomics.”      When conflicts arise between ethical precepts and promoting the interests of the Center, will they be more likely to be resolved in favor of the work of the Center?  Or should  independent ethicists be deciding such important decisions? 

While we might expect a lawyer hired as in-house counsel to a major industry to zealously advocate for its financial interests, we would not expect a law professor to function as a de facto health industry advocate without disclosing the relationship.  Clearly, if Prof. Reiss’s proposed changes in tort law were adopted, vaccination rates would increase (coercively), resulting in increased sales and profits to vaccine interests.   The very idea of leaving exemptions as an option (for now) but threatening lawsuits seems deceptively subversive to me.  Informed consent is still a precious, individual human right, but some, it seems, would alter its protections in favor of universal vaccination.  See, e.g,, Dorit Reiss,“Informed Consent and Vaccines, 1/20/14  UC Hastings Consortium member and law professor Jaime King, “Rethinking Informed Consent; the Case for Shared Medical Decision Making,”
American Journal of Law and Medicine, Vol. 32, pp. 429-501, 2006

These faculty whom Prof. Reiss thanks in her “Acknowledgements” are also “Affiliated Faculty” in the “Consortium” with her:  UC Hastings law professors John Diamond, David Jung, and Rob Schwartz, as well as College Chancellor and Dean, Frank Wu, (“Where Law Schools Get their Money,” 10/13/13 in  (p. 16).   

The consortium receives support from several sources, including the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, which disclaims any association with Kaiser Permanente or with Kaiser Industries. ).  The Kaiser Family Foundation website states that-- unlike other foundations--it does not make grants, but “develops and runs its own research, journalism and communications programs, sometimes in partnership with other non-profit research organizations or major media companies. “   The Gates Foundation gave the Kaiser Foundation $20 million “to provide global health information and analyses.”    (Sandi Doughton and Kristi Helm, “Does Gates funding of media taint objectivity?” p. 5, The Seattle times, 2/19/11, modified 2/23/11, stating that virtually every player in global health receives money from the Gates Foundation.  In May, the Gates Foundation will have a new CEO, Susan Desmond-Hellman, current chancellor of UCSF, former head of  Genentech.).

With shrinking budgets, public-private partnerships between academia, industry, government, and not-for--profits are becoming more and more common.  See www.merck.com/licensing/our-partnership/Eradication-partnership.html (Merck sole industry partner with academia in AIDS research).    (Merck to invest $90 million in not-for-profit research and development center in Bay area, with options).   Michael Cassidy, in “What it takes for America to compete,” advocates “renewing legislation to increase federal investment in universities to generate more breakthroughs in science and technology.”  (The Atlanta Business Chronicle, 1/10/14, at Georgia Research Alliance.org.)  The Georgia Research Alliance is a member of the “Vaccine Dinner Club,” organized to further vaccine interests and enjoy good dinners.  Its membership includes persons from higher education, industry (Georgia Research Alliance, Geovax, and Merck), government, public health (CDC, though it is also a government agency), not-for-profits, and the media.  ;  (article by Frank Wong, AIDS researcher, member of Vaccine Dinner club, “Blind Eye to Scientific Fraud is Dangerous,” a pro-vaccination article, 2/6/2014.)

Yet, there is frequently concern about cooptation with public-private partnerships.  In 2011-2012, only 9% of UC Hastings funding came from taxpayers-- an 88% drop over the last fifteen years.   Uniquely, UC Hastings is not funded by the University of California Board of Regents or, apparently, under its ethical oversight, as the ten main University of California campuses are. (Of note, the UC Hastings Institute for Innovation Law explicitly states it does not accept “gifts with strings attached.”).

In a dispute over whether a university had compromised its integrity by giving too much power to a private think tank, it was stated:  “In CAUT’s [the Canadian Association of University Teachers’] view, universities that badly need money to maintain their programs cannot allow outside interests to shape what they do and whom they hire; without losing the very integrity that makes them unique and valuable.”(James L. Turk, Executive Director of the Canadian Association of University Teachers, “Academic integrity depends on independence – the case of Balsillie.” June 10, 2012, .)

While persuasion is acceptable, propaganda is not.  However, with so much propaganda in the media these days, many people may need help recognizing it.  One tool of propaganda is appealing strongly to the emotions, attempting to override the voice of reason.  Propaganda might be defined as “a deliberate, systematic attempt to manipulate beliefs and emotions, usually through methods considered deceitful and unethical.” J. Michael Hogan, teacher of a class on propaganda. . See also, Garth S. Jowett and Victoria O’Donnell, Propaganda and Persuasion (2011). 

Consider that Prof. Reiss begins this academic journal article with a scare story that tugs at the heartstrings, verified only with videos in German on the anonymous blog of “Caterina” and “Science Mom.”  The emotional opening might cause a reader to overlook the fact that scientific research references were lacking, or that scientific articles easily obtainable at PubMed could counter some of Prof. Reiss’s scientific assumptions. 

For example, the extremely rare disease, subacute sclerosing panencephalitis  (SSPE), can derive either from wild measles infection or vaccination.  The mysterious SSPE is thought to be caused by a persistent, rare, defective measles [or sometimes possibly another] virus that mutates inside the body.  See, for example," Subacute sclerosing panencephalitis in immunized Thai children."Khusiwilai K, Viravan S. J Med Assoc Thai. 2011 Dec;94 Suppl 7:S198-203.PMID:22619930 (SSPE in a fully-immunized ten-year-old boy); "Measles-vaccinated Israeli boy with subacute sclerosing panencephalitis."  Har-Even R, Aichenbaum S, Rabey JM, Livne A, Bistritzer T.Pediatr Neurol. 2011 Jun;44(6):467-70. doi:  10.1016/j.pediatrneurol.2011.01.011.PMID:21555060 (In reporting the case in a 16-year-old boy, the article states:  “This patient illustrates that subacute sclerosing panencephalitis should be suspected among young vaccinated subjects.”) In Papua, New Guinea, there was relatively little measles or SSPE before mass measles vaccination began in 1982, but after that, SSPE became a serious problem. Charles S. Mgone et al, “Clinical presentation of subacute sclerosing panencephalitis in Papua New Guinea, Tropical Medicine and International Health 8:3, pp. 219-227, March 2003.   Perhaps the science is not so clear as Prof. Reiss assumes.

There is also evidence that when measles was a common childhood disease, babies too young to be vaccinated were generally protected by maternal antibodies from infection.  Now, with mass vaccination, it is babies, lacking maternal antibodies, and people whose vaccine-induced immunity has waned who are most at risk.  Dr. Tetyana Obukhanych, immunologist, ebook, “Vaccine Illusions;” see “Dr. Tetyana Obukhanych Talk at Aligned Chiropractic in Kelowna, B.C.”   (explaining that immunologists study  how vaccines work more than they study how the natural immune system works; there is still much to learn.)  

In addition to her own pro-vaccine blogs, “MomswhoVax.com and “BeforeVaccines.com,” Prof. Reiss is an active, Parent Advisory Board member of Voices for Vaccines as well as several Facebook groups that promote vaccines in social media.  Voices for Vaccines, which claims to be funded only through individual donations, has ties through Task Force for Global Health to our government agency, the CDC (Foundation).  Its most recent annual report lists only one donor for Voices for Vaccines. (2012) , p. 42 (Melanie Ejoifor of Queensland). For more information, see

Voices for Vaccines III: The Opinions and Silences of Dorit Reiss

Voces for Vaccines: Industry Front Operation for CDC

Voices for Vaccines and Prof. Reiss espouse the concept, advocated by Curtis Brainard in the Columbia Journalism Review (his presentation promoted on Voices for Vaccines Facebook page,  11/5/2013), that it is “false balance” or “false equivalency” to discuss both sides of the vaccination issue, since the “pro” side is clearly the only one worth telling.     As Tara Haelle who writes at the RedWineandApplesauce.com blog says:  “To present “both sides” is to commit the sin of false balance, or false equivalence, defined similarly by Emily Willingham as “giving equal weight to arguments that don’t carry equal weight of evidence.” “Katie Couric Promotes Anticancer Vaccine Alarmism,”  (referring again to the Curtis Brainard piece aforementioned).  The problem is, who decides which arguments are worth hearing?  Prof. Reiss would seemingly divide the debate into “science” and “anti-vaccination movement,” but that strikes me as a comic book analogy.  Not only is a scientific outlook  marked by open inquiry, but objective truth is a hypothesis always subject to challenge.  In the whole grand scheme of human history, vaccination is a experiment of only a hundred years or so, whose consequences on future generations remain to be seen.

For anyone to be so completely sure that he is right that he would squelch the other’s right to be heard is anathema in a free society, where free speech and open debate are of “paramount value.”   The sentiments are expressed well in the Cornell University Campus Code of Conduct, Title I, Art.3, “Responsible Speech and Expression, A2: “Within such commonly accepted limits, however, freedom of speech should be the paramount value in a university community. Because it is a special kind of community, whose purpose is the discovery of truth through the practice of free inquiry, a university has an essential dependence on a commitment to the values of unintimidated speech. . . “

Of note, Prof. Reiss recently wrote a guest piece at skepticalraptor.com exploring whether the speech of people sharing vaccine safety concerns was protected by the First Amendment, or whether they could be sued if “someone was harmed by it.”  Dorit Reiss, “Anti-vaccination Claims, Misrepresentation, and Free Speech,” 3/19/2014 :,  As she said in a recent commenting debate, “. . . . There are no two scientific sides to the vaccine debate. There is science, and there is anti-vaccine misrepresentation. . . .” (4/8/14 6:30 p.m.,.  How do you tell if someone’s arguments can be dismissed as being in the “anti-vaccine movement?”   Prof. Reiss gave eight signs, quoting “Dr. Gorski.”)

The division of the world into “them” and “us” has proved dangerous in the recent past.  As Prof. David Kertzer of Brown University reminds us in his 2002 book, The Popes against the Jews:  “….It is an age-old story of a powerful religion or powerful people that believes in its own divinely ordained position as sole possessor of the Truth and repository of all that is good, and, pitted against it, a despised minority, the Other, the agent of the devil.  It should not have taken the Holocaust to teach us how dangerous such views of the world can be, but since the destruction of the Jewish millions, we owe it to the survivors and ourselves to learn its lesson….” David I. Kerchner, “The Popes Against the Jews,” Introduction, p. 21 (Vintage Books:  NY 2002).   

One of several pro-vaccination Facebook groups to which Prof. Reiss belongs is called the “Anti-Vax Wall of Shame (AVWOS).”  It is a group that likes to make fun of “Anti-Vaxers,” as those who express concerns about vaccines have been labelled.   Note the “Files” on the AVWOS wall which enable group members to follow “anti-vaccination” comments on the web.  Note the derogatory and disrespectful way in which persons holding different beliefs on vaccine safety are described  (It used to be worse; they’ve cleaned it up in the past few months.  Much of the language from the old, pinned welcoming rant of Michael Simpson is too crude to print; here is one of the more tame examples:  “….We give no quarter to the douchbaggery brought by the anti-vaxxers.  There is no length that we will not go to show their stupidity, their arrogance, their ignorance, and their hatred of children….” This is the crowd with which Prof. Reiss associates online, a crowd comfortable with “hate speech” when it comes to those awful “anti-vaxxers.”  (Facebook, Anti-Vax Wall of Shame, as it appeared in December 2013.).  Many who take the time to research vaccine safety concerns and post about them on the internet are parents of vaccine-injured children.

Intriguingly, several members of this “esteemed and exclusive crowd,” in Michael Simpson’s words, are among the people Prof. Reiss thanked in her acknowledgments to this article:  Michael Simpson himself (of Skeptical Raptor blog fame;  blog to which Prof. Reiss refers readers often , affiliated with Kaiser Permanente; Allison Hagood, Facebook page administrator of AVWOS, Carolyn Bursle, Queensland pediatrician; Paul Offit, Merck vaccine inventor and pro-vaccine spokesperson, recently an advocate of putting journalists in jail who do not toe his line (David Kroll, “Dr. Paul Offit:  ‘Journalism Jail’ For Faulty Medical Reporting,” 3/29/14, Forbes online.).  Paul Offit is on the Scientific Advisory Board for Voices for Vaccines; Stacy Hillenburg, on the Voices for Vaccines Parent Advisory Board with Prof. Reiss; ; Will Robertson; Rene Najera; and Maggie Howell (Note:  membership of Voices for Vaccines Facebook page is no longer open information, as it was in March 2014.).     

Mr. Monroe, you have told me your Journal decided not to publish my letter because you were limiting your publication to “legal academic” works.  Prof. Reiss is arguing for a change in the law that would benefit vaccine manufacturers and others financially, ostensibly in the name of the public good, by coercing parents under threat of lawsuit into vaccinating their children, despite risks which cannot be known in advance for particular children.  In a free country, does health care by extortion really seem advisable?  Much has been written on the morality and ethics of coercive vaccination in Louise Habakus and Mary Holland, J.D.’s book, “Vaccine Epidemic” (Skyhorse Publishing:  NY 2011, 2012).

In short, not everyone shares Prof. Reiss’s starting assumptions that “the science is clear, that “vaccines are very, very safe,” or that it is acceptable to sacrifice some children to vaccine injuries for the asserted good of others.  One could argue that Prof. Reiss in her “Acknowledgments” has made partial, if veiled, disclosure of affiliations which might call into question her fairness and objectivity in writing about vaccine issues and which might, arguably, be “construed to unduly influence the results or interpretation of her manuscript.”   Infants and children cannot weigh risks and benefits of vaccines before consenting or refusing injections.  Our duty of care towards them is of the highest nature, a sacred trust.

Thank you for considering my concerns.



Christina G. Waldman



Christina Waldman is a New York attorney and mom who shares Dr. Andrew Wakefield's concern for vaccine safety as a priority in public health. She is concerned about the health of her future grandchildren, who will be expected to receive many more vaccines than her own children did 30 years ago.


Christina Waldman

Dorit continues to obfuscate, often citing this Mangione article http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/early/2014/06/26/peds.2014-1079.abstract for the proposition that tens of thousands of studies show that vaccines are safe, when what it really says is that out of all those studies, 67 were selected for review, and "limitations of the study include that the majority of studies did not investigate or identify risk factors for AEs; and the severity of AEs was inconsistently reported (Abstract, Results)."

https://disqus.com/home/discussion/thehill-v4/lawmakers_introduce_039vaccines_save_lives039_resolution/#comment-1865160108 where she also says "children have no medical freedoms" (about a month ago, in the comments).

Tomorrow, 4/1/15, at 3:30 p.m., she will be one of three panelists on the UCSF/UC Hastings Consortium on Law, Science and Health Policy's discussion: Measles Outbreaks, Vaccines, and the Law http://www.ucconsortium.org/events/

She continues to propangandize about SSPE, blaming the "misinformation" of "antivaxers" when an unvaccinated child whose parents were doctors contracted SSPE and died--never mentioning the role that vaccination may play in SSPE (see references in "Open Letter" above, please. http://www.dailykos.com/story/2015/03/12/1370490/-Clara-Pays-the-Price-of-Anti-Vaccine-Misinformation#

Christina Waldman

For so long, when asked on numerous occasions by numerous people, Dorit always denied having any financial interest in vaccine promotion. But she confirms her prior admission of ownership in GSK stock on 2/18/2015, as follows: "Yes, I think we do still have stock in GSK.Of course, that means that when I speak up for protecting children against measles - using the MMR - I'm speaking up for the competitor.

You do realize that as conflicts of interests go, being one of many shareholders in a company is pretty trivial? Most Americans with a diverse portfolio will have some stock in a pharmaceutical company. And the connection between correcting misinformation about vaccines and any profit for that is very, very indirect and tenuous.

If you're going to build your conspiracy theory on that - argue that I'm speaking up for children's health because of it - it's not going to get you very far."

http://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/232776-lawmakers-introduce-vaccines-save-lives-resolution on 2/18/2015

John Stone

Hi Christine,

As usual with Dorit every single conflict on her side is invisible and of no account. It starts of with agency capture being good news: even better the CDC are in bed with industry through the CDC Foundation and Task Force. Voices for Vaccines, to which she is an advisor, is a Task Force operation, but still no conflict. Her college are in bed with Kaiser Permanente who are in bed with the CDC and Gates.

It's all one endless gigantic orgy but Dorit doesn't see a problem...


Christina Waldman

Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy follows up with one-sided editorials: http://jlpp.org/blogzine/?p=1736 "POTSHOTS: Misperceptions regarding vaccination safety. Is it safer to avoid vaccination? Of course not." Amanda Duckworth, 10/14/14

http://jlpp.org/blogzine/?p=1725 "Immunity from Immunization, Mandatory Vaccinations and Exemptions, "Should Parents Be Permitted to Exempt Their Children from Vaccination Requirements?" Carolina Veltri, 10/16/14

Also JLLP in 2011 had published: http://jlpp.org/blogzine/?p=293 "Vaccine Torts and Bruesewitz v Wyeth," 8/22/11, professor blog, professors Jeff Van Detta, Joanna Apolinsky, Atlanta's John Marshall Law School

In the following comment exchange, Dorit appears to be admitting to owning stock in GSK, after all her protestations of having no financial interest in the vaccine controversy: http://articles.philly.com/2014-10-26/news/55451059_1_hpv-vaccine-hpv-shot-cervarix "Check Up: the challenge of getting girls the HPV vaccine." Marie McCullough, Inquire Staff Writer, 10/26/14

"7 days ago," as of today, 11/5/14:

"DMH Dorit Reiss • 7 days ago

And what would be your conflicts of interest?

Dorit Reiss [to] DMH • 7 days ago

My family owns, as part of its portfolio, stock of GSK.

I found that out the first time I gave a talk about vaccines - when I looked into that. As a reason to speak up about this topic, from where I stand, it's pretty irrelevant.

What are yours?

DMH [to] Dorit Reiss • 7 days ago

You didn't know your family own GSK stock?
I have no conflicts.

Dorit Reiss [to] DMH • 7 days ago

Not until I looked into it. My husband handles our portfolio.

No conflicts? No case before NVICP? No work in alternative medicine, making money off selling alleged alternatives for vaccines?

DMH [to] Dorit Reiss • 7 days ago

So first you gave a talk about vaccines, then you looked into whether you had stock in a company that makes vaccines, then you became interested in vaccines. Gotcha.
In answer to your questions: no, no, and no.

Dorit Reiss [to] DMH • 7 days ago

No. First I started talking about vaccines on the internet. Then I wrote blog posts on the topic. Then I scheduled a panel on the topic with several colleagues. As preparation, I was asked if I had conflicts of interests. I knew of none. The form included "do you own stock in pharmaceutical companies". So I asked my husband if we had stock.

I hope that's clear.

DMH [to] Dorit Reiss • 6 days ago

So, you really should disclose this when arguing for vaccines."

Christina Waldman

(Update: Dorit's article was published in the spring edition of Cornell's Journal of Law and Public Policy.
http://www.lawschool.cornell.edu/research/JLPP/index.cfm http://www.lawschool.cornell.edu/research/JLPP/upload/Reiss-final.pdf Her author page at SSRN: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/cf_dev/AbsByAuth.cfm?per_id=850451#reg

Christina Waldman

I guess we are expected to believe that the same person who said: "Polio could be eradicated by now if it wasn't [sic] for the human obstacles" (Drat those human obstacles!) also writes: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2396903. Warning: this is a draft paper only and she clearly says "Do not cite or quote without permission of author."

A philosophical exemption is broader than a religious exemption; but broader still would arguably be the Parental Rights Amendment (acknowledging that parents have the right to control the health, education, and welfare of their children). You can sign the petition at www. parentalrights.org. Maybe you might want your child to have one shot (in case of an actual epidemic, say), but not eight shots; but you might be considered to have blown your exempt status if you opt for just one shot. Parents need to have the freedom of flexibility to best protect their children. A person's beliefs are a private matter; yet school districts in New York State interrogate parents to determine the validity of their religious beliefs. We could avoid that with the Parental Rights Amendment.


Check out some of these articles/comments, but the head of Pediatrics at St. Joseph's Hospital in Delhi: http://jacob.puliyel.com, especially the 6th and 7th articles from the top: "IT IS EXPEDIENT, BUT IS IT PRUDENT TO LABEL ADVERSE EVENTS AS 'NOT AN EVENT OF AEFI?' "and his two scathing comments on Tozzi's "Assessment of causality of individual adverse events following immunization (AEFI): A WHO tool for global use."

I'm getting the idea that it's not just the Middle East who doesn't like other countries swarming in and injecting their citizens.

Elizabeth Hart

Christina, thank you for your thoughtful letter, there is a mine of information to consider here.

The situation in Australia is dire. Professor Brian Martin provides an eloquent summary in his article “On the suppression of vaccination dissent” where he argues:


Suppression of dissent, through its chilling effect, can skew public debates, by discouraging participation. In Australia, critics of vaccination have become aware that if they become visible, they are potentially subject to denigration and complaints. Because of the level of personal abuse by pro-vaccinationists, many of those who might take a middle-of-the-road perspective, perhaps being slightly critical of some aspects of vaccine policy, are discouraged from expressing their view. The result is a highly polarized public discourse that is not conducive to the sort of careful deliberation desirable for addressing complex issues.

According to the highest ideals of science, ideas should be judged on their merits, and addressed through mustering evidence and logic. Suppression of dissent is a violation of these ideals. Challenging suppression is part of the struggle to push science towards its own stated principles.


Reference: Martin, Brian. On the suppression of vaccination dissent. Science & Engineering Ethics. March 2014, doi 10.1007/s11948-014-9530-3 http://www.bmartin.cc/pubs/14see.html

False scientists make me laugh

To your point about Pharma's propaganda being nazi-like, I would also say that the social media aspect has been working for them, young people being sucked in to some point. However, I also see that so very many people are getting tired of this "thought policing" that is happening now and are feeling that it is getting a bit much. People can sense the desperation. Nobody wants to be told what to think or believe. It is close to the point, if not already, of being irritating and fake seeming.
I do believe, as you say, that the numbers of affected people are simply too great for the average person not to personally know someone who has been affected by a vaccine reaction. I mean look at Gardasil- these women all have friends, teachers, family who talk. That kind of first hand experience is powerful and people listen to that. In fact just the other day, the topic of vaccines and autism came up and a woman spoke up about a deceased woman friend's young nephew who had a horrible reaction to measles or MMR vaccine and then became autistic. This woman absolutely believed her friend over whatever the papers might say.

Use real numbers

Cia, it is their technique. They treat children who suffer adverse effects from a vaccine in an abstract manner and thus it is easier for them to justify. Easier for them to sweep under the rug, They will speak of "a small percentage of children" having vaccine reactions. This has been their tactic and quite deliberate, too. They never want to her raw numbers, yet when the rare occurance happens where a child dies, of say measles, they speak of "body counts."
We need to use their tactic in wandering deaths, total autism deaths (due to seizures, abuse, wandering etc.) and vaccine adverse events. They seem to like real numbers. So should we.
It is truly galling and horrific to hear them just dismiss these children as mere "percentages." We cannot let them refer to children in the abstract as "percentages." if we have pictures to names then even better.


You are so right. That is exactly what is happening.

John Stone


Your remind me of the British mainstream media in 2003 and early 2004 prior to the scurrilous accusations of Brian Deer and the Sunday Times against Andrew Wakefield. Every junk journalist was whispering against him: people who knew nothing. I don't know whether they were bought but more probably they were just doing favours to sources "they could trust".

'You cannot hope
to bribe or twist,
thank God! the
British journalist.

'But, seeing what
the man will do
unbribed, there's
no occasion to.'

Humbert Wolfe (1885-1940)

Wolfe was a poet (generally not very good) and British Civil Servant of Italian Jewish origins. These verses are his best remembered lines. British health journalists particularly are always happy to be fed crap, providing they know they are not going to be attacked by the rich and powerful. Of course, it is all much worse now, even than in 2004.


Loved your friend Cherry!

Tell Friend to Cherry I was grateful for her post even though I did not acknowledge it.

cia parker

S. Ilfray-Hraka,
You need to read about the issue, maybe start with Vaccine Epidemic, The Age of Autism (book), and Evidence of Harm. Then Make an Informed Vaccine Decision and anything by Neil Miller.
I'm reading about how the Nazis whipped up hatred of the Jews and other minority groups enough to carry out the holocaust. Totalitarian regimes (like the pharma empire) saturate the populace with the same message repeated endlessly every day year after year. I was really interested in seeing examples of the "wall newspapers" that the Nazi propaganda department produced and then plastered up by the hundreds of thousands every week on every imaginable surface: nasty, scurrilous, hateful lies with pictures of cartoon-like villains, to make ordinary Germans think that they were the victims of an invisible global Jewish conspiracy conceived to enslave and exploit them. We're seeing exactly the same thing now: Big Pharma using its monopoly of the medical industry, legislatures, and mainstream media to crank out its lies by the hundreds of thousands, in every magazine, periodically on every news broadcast, in every school and hospital and doctor's office, to mold the minds of the populace so that it seems like a truth as obvious as that that the sun always comes up in the east, that vaccines are safe, effective, the diseases all extremely dangerous and only held in check by the vaccines. That people who don't vax are stupid, selfish, and that by not vaxing we're actively consenting to the murder of innocents. That vaccines do not and never have caused autism, asthma, allergies, etc. etc. Sure, say it over and over and over, but those of us who have seen vaccine damage know the truth is ours, and that they are only motivated by vaccine profits. They manipulate people's natural desire to protect children, but twist it so as to deny children protection from vaccine damage, and encourage hatred of the victims of vaccines. They are going to lose: how could it be otherwise, with one in 36 children rendered autistic now by vaccines? It would certainly appear that we exist in a vacuum, isolated from knowledge of the rest of the world, but there are narrow conduits with news from the outside world, where vaccines are used much less often, resulting in much lower rates of autism. The pharma center of vaccine conviction cannot hold much longer: as Michael Belkin says, the vaccine bubble will burst, and yes, then we will see Armageddon in our lifetime.

Christina Waldman

Thank you all for the comments thus far. Let's be careful not to read too much into things. E.g., just because Cornell did not find that my letter met its publishing needs does not make it evil. Perhaps Cornell will be open to publishing something else in the future more along "legal academic" lines. I am very grateful for AgeofAutism.com, for John Stone, Mary Holland (author of "Vaccine Epidemic" with Louise Habakus) and to the many of you who fight strong and relentlessly on behalf of the truth which is what best protects children--and adults.

Cherry Sperlin Misra

People in the law profession are supposed to pride themselves on their logic. It would seem to me that in order to make laws for prosecuting "failure to vaccinate", one would first have to prove that vaccines always "work" in the manner that the public imagines them to work- shall we say- "always effective". It is unlikely that this can be proven , so it would seem that this topic is going nowhere. Notice that I am totally omitting the aspects of vaccine safety and freedom of individuals from having their bodies invaded against their will. One would imagine that Dorit Reiss too would like to omit those topics. Or is this a new, twenty-first century brand of legal adventure in which truth and logic are trumped by clever talk ? Perhaps that has a corollary in the medical profession which happily abandoned truth and logic in favor of the Holy Vaccine.


S. Ilfray-Hraka
Crazy speech is okay it is just air molecules moving around in waves
Crazy acts is a whole different thing now isn't it.

Would you consider a child that reacted violently to a vaccine - Oh say developed a heart murmur and it heart swelled up and a soft X ray shows a boot shaped heart and a ped vaccinates again?

Nope - not crazy enough

So the next time the child comes in and after the second vaccine - Mother reports it passed out, gsaping with 105 and
you vaccinate again.

How about this crazy act -- 7 weeks after a DPT shot that swelled up the size of a golf ball the kid develops Kawasakis -- really bad form and in the hospital for 3 whole weeks - with it's spleen swollen out like a basket ball.

Kawasakis is/was known to be an auto immune disease and it's victims were known to show symptoms up to a year if not longer and the recommendations is to continue to vaccinate.

Now how crazy is that?


I hope that the upcoming film, "Bought", includes and expose on Reiss and her partners in crime.

S. Ilfray-Hraka

There needs to be some sort of regulation of speech like this--it's like yelling "MOVIE" in a fire house, and that just isn't right. I may not be able to define crazy speech, but I sure know it when I read it and I sure feel like I'm reading it.

cia parker

DR just wrote another long, long legal article on annulling the religious exemption to vaccines. Toward the end there were a number of screen shots of blog comments back and forth on women discussing taking a religious exemption to the shot requirement for their children entering school. I think part of the reason she was hired was to research the vaccine market and draft regulations that BP will attempt to make law: regulations that legislatures and legislators will accept and give the force of law, to coerce parents into vaxing from fear of losing everything they have in lawsuits. To whip up pro-vaccine frenzy to be able to say that it is the will of the majority to disallow religious exemptions, and that such is the moral thing to do, since the science ALL yields the result that vaccines are safe and effective, the diseases deadly and only held in check by most children receiving all the vaxes. She said she had never even heard of the vaccine issue until two years ago: how sincere can this pro-vaccine fervor be when she contends that she never gave it a thought until after having a child? How contemptible for a newby to dismiss without a care the evidence of thousands of scientific studies (count the ones at the end of Neil Miller's books in the lists of works cited), the grief of millions of parents of children with neurological or autoimmune damage caused by vaccines! She just says Yes, she feels deep sympathy for all the parents whose child lost *** or began *** for the first time immediately or shortly after vaccines, and feels no qualms at all about saying, BUT, it was certainly only a coincidence. Because ALL of us are certain that vaccines could never ever cause such an outcome. No matter how many thousands of times the same thing happens in the same time frame, it doesn't matter, it was only a coincidence. What kind of science is that? Oh, yeah, the kind that always delivers the results that were paid for in advance.

Laura Hayes

Thank you, Christina, for this in-depth article. I read it once this morning, and again tonight. So much to take in, and all of it so disturbing, unethical, and in actuality, inhumane. People like Dorit Reiss are severe threats to our country, our freedom, our children and families, and our future viability.

Thank you for exposing Dorit Reiss, and UC Hastings College of Law, and Kaiser Permanente, and UCSF, and Merck, and now, Cornell University, for what they are...threats to our fundamental human rights. Who and what should that remind us of?

Cynthia Maurer

After running into Dorit, I began to think her a 'bot' and then thought that might in fact, be a little extreme, but I am again wondering why one person would make such a concerted effort to be everywhere and everything to pro-vaccine advocates, were there not some profit motive associated with her machinations about the safety and effectiveness of vaccines. She is like a shepherd to the sheeple who prefer to offer ad hominem arguments in place of scientific fact. And when does a law professor find time to have researched so much about the pro-vax argument for this purpose, had she not had assisted by drug company marketing handlers. That she burst upon the scene to deliver the consistent blogs and links of trite information presented to her as needed with the slant to scare parents into buying into the vaccinations are safe and effective hype, is a startling finding and leaves many to question her motives. Thank you for this article which ties together some lose ends in my concerns regarding her unsavory connections.



Can we band together, take out a full-page ad in one of the major newspapers, and print it there?

cia parker

Wonderful letter, great research! Thank you for your work on this!


Thank you so much for your intelligent and courageous advocacy. We'll see now if or to what extent the Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy has been bought.

S. Ilfray-Hraka

What you have said leaves me speechless. When will this letter be published in a journal?


Christine Wald
Thoughtful, detailed letters such as this gets me through days when I think this issue is going to end us all -with huddle masses of humanity, crippling the the United States because so much of the population has suffered all kinds of different brain injuries from vaccinations.

"Responible speech" Is what they are spouting to the news media --and that is how they are getting away with it.

One thing about it though -after this era has pass (if there is anything left) those in the furture will use the example of vaccine issue of how the lines get blurred and dangerous around the concept of responsible speech.

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