By Anne Dachel
One thing I’ve never heard ANY JOURNALIST say to either Robert Kennedy, Jr. or Andrew Wakefield: “I read your book, and I wanted to have you clarify …? What did you mean when you wrote…?” That goes for Kennedy’s Thimerosal, Let the Science Speak and Wakefield’s Callous Disregard. --- In 2011, ABC’s George Stephanopoulos told Wakefield he’d read Callous Disregard, but he couldn’t cite a single thing he’d written in it. What does this tell us about the motives of the media? What does this tell us about the disgraceful profession journalism has become?
British reporter Cathy Newman pretended that she only wants to protect children from the anti-vaccine/anti-science movement in a two part series called, Trump, the Doctor & the Vaccine Scandal shown on British television Channel 4 on May 8, 2017.
The promo from Channel 4 made it clear that this was not objective journalism. Portraying Donald Trump as a dangerous fanatic who “is questioning the way children are vaccinated,” and describing Andrew Wakefield as “a disgraced British doctor” let us know just where this was going.
Newman accused Wakefield of being a fraud, but that distinction should actually go to her for this cover-up of the truth about vaccine damage.
Newman’s report was promoted by the UK’s Evening Standard. The Standard said Newman interviewed Wakefield, but that didn’t really happen as you can see. At the end of part two, all Wakefield had to say to her was, "I don't talk to fake news."
This coverage was carefully designed to vilify Andrew Wakefield and Robert Kennedy, Jr. and ANYONE else who dares to question vaccine safety claims.
And if you're someone who doesn't know the issue, she's pretty convincing.
Notice several things about Part One:
Cathy Newman referred to Paul Offit merely as a "leading vaccine scientist." Everything Wakefield did was fraudulent and for personal gain. We’re told he was run out of the profession, and the connection between Donald Trump, Robert Kennedy, Jr. and Andrew Wakefield is endangering children's lives.
Newman went on the attack with several unfounded allegations, accusing Wakefield’s research of being fraudulent, and for public gain. She accused high-profile vaccine safety advocates of endangering children’s lives, and mocks anyone sharing those concerns as “conspiracy theorists.”
Ignoring hundreds of studies showing both occurrence and mechanism of harm from vaccines, Newman insisted that everything about vaccines is safe, even HPV, MMR, and thimerosal.
The government whistleblower story is dismissed by Peter Hotez. The name of William Thompson is never mentioned.
The current autism rate is never mentioned.
Newman was at the March D.C. Rally for Truth, only the audience wasn't made up of mothers of vaccine-injured children, it was just a lot of "vaccine critics."
Newman talked with Kennedy and used the footage to make him look like someone out of touch with reality who panders to a likeminded following. At the end, she and Kennedy go to the rally. She promised to do her research on this topic.
That will never happen. Her job depends on her NOT LOOKING AT THE SCIENCE KENNEDY TALKED ABOUT.
May 8, 2017, Dispatches: [Part 1] Trump, the Doctor & the Vaccine Scandal
"And yet there is no credible scientific evidence to support Trump's views. All vaccines, combined or not, (Paul Offit is shown) have been tested comprehensively. There have been seventeen authoritive studies which show MMR does not cause autism.
“Dr. Paul Offit is a leading vaccine scientist and a key supporter of America’s vaccination program.”
Dr. Offit: “A truth has emerged: the MMR vaccine doesn’t cause autism. I think when a single study is done, that doesn’t prove anything, but I think when study after study after study is done—in this case there are seventeen studies that have been done in seven different countries, on three different continents, involving hundreds of thousands of children—all of which have found the same thing. Now you can say, MMR does not cause autism.” …
… “Well, it appears one important influence is a British medical researcher who’s been almost completely discredited back home.
“Step forward, Andrew Wakefield, a former doctor at London’s Royal Free Hospital, who in 1998 falsely linked the MMR jab and autism. …
“In 2004, reporter Brian Deer investigated him for this program. … Wakefield was also being paid by solicitors who were suing the makers of the MMR jab, and he’d been accused by a colleague of misrepresenting data.
“Wakefield’s claims caused chaos. MMR vaccination rates fell by seven percent over three years. His disgrace culminated by being struck off by the General Medical Council in 2010. …
“That might have finished most people, not Wakefield. Six years later he’s meeting the future President (photo of Dr. Wakefield and Donald Trump is shown) and soon after in a tough thumping speech, ‘Trump is a big fan.’ …
“The morning after the election, Wakefield is exultant. …
A video of Dr. Wakefield and Polly Tommey was shown talking about their hopes for the new administration and the vaccine issue.
Newman: “Wakefield even gets an invitation to the inauguration ball. …
“So how on earth did a struck-off doctor, whose work is utterly discredited, make such an extraordinary comeback? …
“He takes his message to America’s flourishing conspiracy theory fringe, …along side mind control experts and crop circle enthusiasts. And he expands his attack on vaccines to further his cause while appearing on America’s number one conspiracy show, Info Wars. (Clip of Dr. Wakefield and Alex Jones is shown.) …
Video of Wakefield on the HPV vaccine.
Wakefield: “And the latest report I saw in there was 22,000 reports of adverse reactions from this vaccine alone …”
“In fact this vaccine is one of the safest and has halved rates of infections in American teenagers.
“But no matter how wacky Wakefield sounds, there are plenty of Americans listening. One in ten parents now believes vaccines are unsafe. As a result, preventable and lethal diseases are rising. The state of Minnesota is currently in the grip of its largest measles outbreak in nearly three decades.
“That’s the backdrop to Wakefield’s latest and biggest projects: ‘Vaxxed,’ a campaigning feature film which directs and stars in. …
“ ‘Vaxxed’ masquerades as an investigative expose. It claims that the body that regulates vaccine policy in America, [the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention], has suppressed data linking the MMR jab with autism. …
“The source of this information is a whistleblower within the CDC who disputes how the data was presented in a report, but reputable scientists say the claims have been completely overblown.”
Dr. Peter Hotez of Texas Children’s Hospital on ‘Vaxxed’: “I think ‘Vaxxed’ is a badly written science fiction film. Absolutely no basis in reality. It makes false allegations about vaccines. It makes false allegations that there’s a massive cover-up by the Centers for Disease Control. …
“It’s not really a whistleblower. If you know anything about how a federal agency works, even if they wanted to cover-up and engage in a vast conspiracy, they’d be utterly unable to do that.”
“ ‘Vaxxed might be science fiction, but we’ve heard that when Wakefield met Trump last year, he gave him a copy of the film.
“Our investigation has found that Wakefield’s journey from doctor to film director has been financially rewarding. His Texas home wouldn’t look out of place in Beverly Hills. …
The video accused Dr. Wakefield of making enormous amounts of money through an organization he founded.
“Wakefield is not a lone voice challenging the safety of vaccines.
“Robert Kennedy, Jr. is political aristocracy, the nephew of former President John F. Kennedy. Like Wakefield, he believes vaccines cause brain disorders.
“I watched him address a rally of vaccine critics. He’s another leader of this growing movement, and another leader who has met the President.
“In January, he went to Trump Tower, where he says the President asked him to lead a vaccine safety commission. …
“Although the White House itself played down the prospect of the commission, Kennedy says he’s ready to start. He believes vaccines are dangerous because some of them contain mercury. Several studies have looked into this and dismissed it.
“But he told me there’s a conspiracy to keep it quiet, and I was in on it.”
Clip of Newman’s interview with Kennedy
Newman. “There’s a danger that you, that Andrew Wakefield, that President Trump are peddling discredited theories that now are undermining in the whole vaccine program, and that is endangering children’s lives.”
Kennedy: “Well you can say that, but I’m not the one who put the mercury in the vaccines. What I would say is that it’s the lack of critical scrutiny by the press that is enabling a reckless kind of behavior by CDC and the vaccine industry.”
Newman: “You’re saying I’m being reckless asking the questions—”
Kennedy: “I think you’re being reckless by taking a position as a journalist.”
Newman: “No, I’m not taking a position.”
Kennedy: “You’re very much so. You seem extremely biased. First of all, you’re not looking at the science. What you’re reading is pharmaceutical company propaganda. Let’s go across the street, and I’m going to show you 83 studies.”
Newman: “Let’s do that.
“So we were off, over the road, to the rally where he could introduce me to his supporters. ...”
Kennedy: “You will say things that people told you.”
Newman: “They were also Wakefield supporters and even colleagues, like the producer of ‘Vaxxed,’ Del Bigtree.”
Del Bigtree: “Children will be murdered this year by a vaccine program. Children will have their brains damaged by the vaccine program. And the statement that mainstream medicine wants to say is that it’s an acceptable risk.”
Newman: “Some wouldn’t hear a bad word against Wakefield.”
Dr. Toni Bark is shown. “…Andy’s work and research has been repeated by numerous people.”
Newman: “But he was struck off as a doctor in the U.K.”
Dr. Bark: “But it wasn’t after a jury and a trial with evidence.”
Newman: “This might be a fringe movement, but it’s a combative one, chipping away at public faith in vaccines.”
Speaking to Robert Kennedy: “I will do my homework. I will do my research.”
Sadly, Cathy Newman, just like everyone else in the mainstream media, will never research this topic. The only “homework” she do is to look up government talking points.
If I were Kennedy or Wakefield, and a reporter came up to me, my first question would be, “Have you read my book? What would you like to know about it?”
And when they have to say, “No,” I’d offer them a copy. Actually, I’ve heard Wakefield do this on several occasions.
One of the most blatant examples of media bias was on CNN in 2011.
Dr. Wakefield suggested that Anderson Cooper should read his book. Cooper didn’t answer, leaving the audience to wonder if he had read any of it before this interview. Cooper only said that he'd read Brian Deer's writing and that he wasn't interested in having Wakefield "pitch" his book on the air.
3:40 Anderson Cooper: “I confronted Dr. Wakefield earlier by Skype. ....”
Wakefield responded to Cooper’s question about Brian Deer’s charge in the British Medical Journal that Wakefield’s study was “an elaborate fraud.”
Wakefield: “I’ve had to put up with this man’s false allegations for many, many years. I’ve written a book, and in that book, I’ve explained—”
Cooper cut Wakefield off
Cooper: “But this wasn’t just one man, this is published in the British Medical Journal.”
Wakefield: “I have not as yet had a chance to read that, but I have read his multiple allegations on many occasions. He’s a hit man. He’s been brought in to take me down because they are very, very concerned about the adverse reactions to vaccines that are occurring in children.”
Cooper: “Wait a minute, sir. Let me just stop you right there. You say he is a hit man and has been brought in by ‘they.’ Who is ‘they’? Who is he a hit man for? He’s an independent journalist who’s won many awards.”
Wakefield: “I don’t know. I do know he’s not a journalist like you are.”
Cooper: “He’s actually signed a document guaranteeing that he has no financial interest in any of this. …”
Wakefield: “That’s interesting that he should say that because he was supported in his investigation by the Association of British Pharmaceutical Industries which is funded directly and exclusively by the pharmaceutical industry.”
Cooper: “According to him, he’s received no funding from any parties that have interests in this over the last three years. …”
Wakefield: “I’m here at a meeting of experts on vaccines from around the world who are extremely concerned about the safety of vaccines and the damage that they believe, and I believe, is being done to children.”
Cooper: “Sir, there is no proof of that, and your study is a fraud, according to this latest investigation which has taken quite some time—and sir, just let me continue. It’s not just this one journalist who’s saying this, who you believe is some sort of a hit man. It’s not just pharmaceutical companies or the AMA, and it’s not just public health officials from around the world, and it’s not just doctors from around the world, it’s also other journalists who’ve looked into your research and found it’s simply incorrect.
“Are you saying they’re all in conspiracy against you?”
Wakefield: “No, they haven’t. They’ve taken his story and treated it as true. And if you read my book, you will be able to read the truth. Has the BMJ read my book? Have the doctors who apparently looked at all the records, read my book? No, because the truth is in that book— ”
Cooper: “Sir, I’ve read Brian Deer’s report which is incredibly extensive—Sir, I’m not here to let you pitch your book, I’m here to have you answer questions.” (This happened as Wakefield was shown holding up a copy of his book, Callous Disregard.)
“Sir, Brian Deer has talked to the parents of the patients who were in your original study, and he discovered that not one of the twelve cases you claimed to have studied was free of ‘misrepresentation or alteration. In no single case could the medical records be fully reconciled with the descriptions, diagnoses, or histories published in the journal.’
“Some of the parents in your original study say what you claimed about their kids’ medical histories was not true. Are those parents now lying?”
Wakefield: “That is false. He has not interviewed the parents. That is absolutely not true.”
Cooper: “So you’re saying that no parents say that what you say about their children’s medical histories is false?”
Wakefield: “No, they don’t. What I have said, and what has been reported in that paper made by me and my colleagues is exactly what we saw.”
Cooper: “I want to read you some of the other specifics from the report. Three of the nine children reported with regressive autism, according to Mr. Deer, did not have autism diagnosed at all. Only one child clearly had regressive autism. Is that true?”
Wakefield: “No, it’s not. The diagnoses are as they were in the children. I did not make the diagnoses of autism. I did not make up the diagnoses. The diagnoses were taken from the clinical records and reviewed by experts at the Royal Free Hospital, School of Medicine—”
Cooper: “According to Mr. Deer, some kids were reported to have experienced first behavioral symptoms within days of MMR…, but the records documented these as starting some months after the vaccine.”
Wakefield: “If you read the record that I have set out in the book, you will see the truth— ”
Cooper: “But sir, if you’re lying, then your book is also a lie. If your study is a lie, your book is a lie.”
Wakefield: “The book is not a lie, the study is not a lie. The findings that we made have been replicated in five countries around the world—”
Cooper: “That’s not true. You’ve been offered the chance to replicate your study, and you’ve never taken anybody up on that. You’ve had plenty of opportunity to replicate your study.”
Wakefield: “You’ve just accused me of giving you a falsehood. I am telling you that this work has been replicated in five countries around the world.”
Cooper: “Then why has it been completely discredited by public health officials around the world?”
Wakefield: “I suggest you do your investigation properly before making such allegations.”
Wakefield: “If you look up the name Gonzalez, if you look up the name …Krigsman, you’ll see that the work has been replicated independently by other doctors around. They fail to mention that in these allegations, and Deer has failed to mention that at any time. Is that honest?”
Cooper: “Deer also says that patients were recruited through anti-MMR campaigners, and your study was commissioned and funded for planned litigation. You did have a lawsuit against manufacturers of the MMR vaccine, didn’t you? Didn’t you have a financial conflict of interest?”
Wakefield: “The paper that was published in the Lancet received not one cent of funding from lawyers or litigants.”
Cooper: “Did you not have a financial interest though. Did you disclose that you were being paid by a law firm?”
Wakefield: “I disclosed in the relevant paper that I was an expert in MMR litigation, yes.”
Cooper: “You didn’t disclose you were being paid though for a possible lawsuit against the vaccine makers, that you were developing a patent for an alternate vaccine.”
Wakefield: “The purpose of this paper [had] nothing to do with the litigation. These children were seen on the basis of their clinical symptoms, for their clinical need, and they were seen by expert clinicians, and their disease, diagnosed by them, not by me—”
Cooper: “Sir, you’re attacking the motives of a journalist though, and others, who oppose you, and yet you yourself have a financial stake in the research you were doing.”
Wakefield: “No, I didn’t. The grant that was given was not given to me. It was given to the medical school to conduct the research program. Not to me personally.”
Cooper: “If your research was not a fraud, if your research was valid, why have ten of your coauthors all retracted the paper’s interpretation back in 2004?”
Wakefield: “Because I’m afraid that the pressure has been put on them to do so. People get very, very frightened. You’re dealing with some very powerful interests here. …
“The reason they are concerned is because a whistleblower came to me and gave me evidence that the British government had indemnified the vaccine manufacturers for the introduction of an MMR vaccine that they knew to be unsafe, and which had been withdrawn in Canada at the time. It was withdrawn four years later in the U.K., and many children were damaged.”
Seemingly oblivious to what Wakefield just said, Cooper said,
“Sir, you’ve been stripped of your clinical and academic credentials, you’re no longer a doctor. Your medical license has been taken away, correct?”
Actually, if Anderson Cooper had taken the time to read Wakefield’s book, he’d have known about the whistleblower who came to Wakefield. Cooper didn’t care what Wakefield had to say. His job was to discredit him.
Cooper didn't talk to a single parent of any of the children Wakefield had as patients. Not one. He simply accepted Brian Deer's allegations. Cooper called Wakefield’s work "a lie" and referred to his book as "a lie." Cooper never once addressed Wakefield as “doctor,” but only as “sir.”
Wakefield said his work had been replicated in five studies around the world. Cooper answered him by saying no, it hasn't been. Incredibly, Cooper wasn't able to say that he'd checked into any of the five duplicated studies that Wakefield said have been done.
Wakefield told Cooper, "I suggest you do your investigation properly before making such allegations." It was clear that Cooper hadn't bothered to look into Wakefield's work.
Finally, let me give you something similar that happened to Robert Kennedy two years ago in Trenton, New Jersey.
Robert Kennedy, Jr. has been very vocal across the U.S. opposing bills to end exemptions. Below is a transcript from Kennedy's press conference in Trenton, New Jersey. He focused on the corruption, collusion and malfeasance at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It was a scathing report about the ethics of the agency in charge of vaccine safety.
The second half of his 45 minute talk was a chance for reporters to question Kennedy about his claims. Incredibly, during the question and answer session not a single reporter asked about the scandalous charges Kennedy made about top U.S. health officials. Most of them asked about exemptions and herd immunity. It was like they weren't even in the room.
When members of the press so willingly close their eyes to charges of fraud and the damage done to a generation of children, they become part of the corruption. …
What happened to Wakefield in the coverage by Cathy Newman and by Anderson Cooper, along with the critical reviews of Kennedy’s book BEFORE it was published, implicates the press right along with health officials in this massive cover-up of the damaging effects of our out-of-control vaccine schedule.
The charge against the media is deliberate ignorance. They don’t want to know what’s going on.
Anne Dachel is Media Editor for Age of Autism.