Why has no unvaxed vs. Fully vaxed study been done??? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 44 Old 07-18-2010, 10:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I would love to see this issue settled. I believe that the current vaccine schedule is INSANE! I think parents who have not vaccinated their children would love to see a study done. HAs one ever been done? Is one planned???
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#2 of 44 Old 07-18-2010, 11:11 PM
 
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For one thing, it would be very difficult to assemble a large enough sample of unvaccinated kids to produce results with any meaningful statistical power. How would you design such a study to be anything but a fishing expedition? What is to be tested for?
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#3 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 12:06 AM
 
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Really? I don't think it'd be hard. For one, there's a whole medical group here in Chicago which doesn't vaccinate (HomeFirst). Just compare that medical group to a standard pediatrician's office. It wouldn't be hard.

You're looking for any statistical differences. Fishing? Yeah. If there are any statistical differences follow up on a more concentrated study on that difference.

I think no one does it, because no one will fund it. There's no money in it.

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#4 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 04:05 AM
 
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I think no one does it, because no one will fund it. There's no money in it.
I disagree. There's money in it, for both sides. Many anti-vax groups could easily afford to fund such a study, and it certainly wouldn't be a financial strain on pharmaceutical companies. And they'd both have something to gain from it if the results turned out the way they wanted. For pharm companies it would increase consumer confidence in their products, thereby leading to more sales of vaccines. For anti-vax organizations it would increase consumer confidence in them, leading people to be more likely to buy their products and treatments.

So yeah, I also wonder why such a study hasn't been done.
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#5 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 11:46 AM
 
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I think it has to do with the "I'm an intelligent, responsible doctor/scientist/researcher, not a crazy internet conspiracy theorist" feeling among those who push vaccines. While there may be large unvaxed populations out there to compare with the vaxed group, it would be impossible (with current medical and political vaccination pressure) to design and implement a double blind study, which is one of the best types of studies with (supposedly) some of the most reliable results. (A double blind study would randomly assign vax or no vax to individual parents/children, and neither the doctors nor patients would know who had been assigned to what group.) So, if anti-vax groups performed a "low-quality" study, the medical community would dismiss its results as not valid.

If pro-vax/medical folks caried out this "low-quality" study, and its data supported not vax'ing, what then? More studies would have to be performed, but they would need them to be "better quality," which would necessitate double blinding, which would be "unethical." Not to mention that even to design/fund such a study would be akin to admitting that there may be problems with vaccination. No one in the pro-vax camp wants to open that can of worms.

Even with such a study, it would be difficult to "prove" anything either way. What would the study be measuring? How would you determine whether any vaccine-related problems/risks the study may bring to light outweigh the "benefits" of vaccination over the last several decades? We can't now accurately measure how much vaccination can actually be attributed historically to disease decline, although the popular view is that they have been essential in this role. If the study showed that vaccines are in fact detrimental to some fraction (or all) of the population, pro-vaxers would marginalize these results in favor of the greater good that vaccines have supposedly done.

Also, vaccination/disease risk in the US isn't the same as vaccination/disease risk in South Africa, for instance. Assuming a satisfactory study could be done in the US with clear results showing the problems/risks of vaccination for American children, where does that leave the rest of the world? It would open up ethical questions and issues in all sorts of areas, from WHO recommendations to charitable and government agencies who provide free or low-cost vaccinations to the poorest children in Africa. Would they continue? How would we quantify the risks to those children from vaccination in light of the risks they face from contaminated water, insufficient food, endemic disease, etc?

Then of course I also believe that there is a certain element of pride among doctors, medical organizations, the CDC, WHO, etc that prevents them from even seeking any further for answers. What if they have been wrong all these years? Their credibility would crumble. And while I am certainly no proponent of most of these groups in general, I do believe there are very good things that some of them do, in some areas. If the emperor has no clothes in this instance, what impact would it have on the health and well-being of certain people in other arenas (for example, maternal and infant health, breastfeeding, etc)?

I agree that such a study would be interesting. There are just so many other questions and disincentives for either camp to go there.
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#6 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 12:37 PM
 
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Completely agree with Pirogi. And there have been efforts to fund such studies, but it always was shot down. The manufacturers have no interest in such studies, absolutely not. It might prove that their products are not great, and they wouldn't want that. Even if it showed to just cause something slightly bad it would be detrimental to them and the whole medical industry.
There were comparisons in the Netherlands. I can't find it right now, but there are large pockets of unvaccinated children in Holland and they were compared to a similar group of vaccinated children, and the unvaxxed did better.
Here is another list of small studies:
http://imcv.info/vaccination/article...-children.html

A big study could never be double blind, but there are enough unvaccinated children for a meaningful sample. Here and in Europe. Even moreso in Europe. Back home we don't have mandatory vaccines so there are more people who don't vaccinate since they know it is a personal medical choice and no nanny-state-health-mandate (at least in Switzerland and Germany, I know France, Belgium and Slovakia mandate some, gag). I still can't believe that the "land of the free" is so dictatorial about vaccines! It's absurd.
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#7 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 12:57 PM
 
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There was just a study done on macac (sorry, don't know the proper spelling) monkey babies. Vaccinated with the full schedule and not vaccinated at all. I'll try to find the link. It's quite interesting. I know Dan Olmstead had something about it on his page. The powers-that-be did NOT want the study done at all. That should tell us something...

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#8 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 03:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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????
If 100 unvaxed were available,which they are, I'm certain something could be learned. WhAt is the autism rate (allergy, asthma etc) among unvaxed
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#9 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 03:44 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Pirogi View Post
While there may be large unvaxed populations out there to compare with the vaxed group, it would be impossible (with current medical and political vaccination pressure) to design and implement a double blind study, which is one of the best types of studies with (supposedly) some of the most reliable results.
I think it's considered unethical to do that. It wouldn't be allowed. You're not allowed to deny proven life-saving treatment (which is what the medical community considers vaccines) to a patient, even if it's for a study. They'd see it as harming the patient by not giving them the vaccine, so a clinical study like that could not be allowed.
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(A double blind study would randomly assign vax or no vax to individual parents/children, and neither the doctors nor patients would know who had been assigned to what group.) So, if anti-vax groups performed a "low-quality" study, the medical community would dismiss its results as not valid.
I disagree. What could be done is an epidemiological study. The medical community does not look down on those at all. In fact, epidemiological studies are usually conducted before clinical studies, because it's usually the epidemiological study that identifies a problem. It could be done by either side.

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If pro-vax/medical folks caried out this "low-quality" study, and its data supported not vax'ing, what then? More studies would have to be performed, but they would need them to be "better quality," which would necessitate double blinding, which would be "unethical." Not to mention that even to design/fund such a study would be akin to admitting that there may be problems with vaccination. No one in the pro-vax camp wants to open that can of worms.
If an epidemiological study identified vaccines as creating an endemic problem, it could be studied clinically. Because then the safety and benefit of the vaccine would be called into question, which would negate the "doing no harm" aspect. And given all of the medicines and vaccines that have been studied and subsequently taken off the market, it doesn't seem like the medical community has shown reticence to investigate.

Even with such a study, it would be difficult to "prove" anything either way. What would the study be measuring? How would you determine whether any vaccine-related problems/risks the study may bring to light outweigh the "benefits" of vaccination over the last several decades? We can't now accurately measure how much vaccination can actually be attributed historically to disease decline, although the popular view is that they have been essential in this role. If the study showed that vaccines are in fact detrimental to some fraction (or all) of the population, pro-vaxers would marginalize these results in favor of the greater good that vaccines have supposedly done.

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Also, vaccination/disease risk in the US isn't the same as vaccination/disease risk in South Africa, for instance. Assuming a satisfactory study could be done in the US with clear results showing the problems/risks of vaccination for American children, where does that leave the rest of the world? It would open up ethical questions and issues in all sorts of areas, from WHO recommendations to charitable and government agencies who provide free or low-cost vaccinations to the poorest children in Africa. Would they continue? How would we quantify the risks to those children from vaccination in light of the risks they face from contaminated water, insufficient food, endemic disease, etc?

Then of course I also believe that there is a certain element of pride among doctors, medical organizations, the CDC, WHO, etc that prevents them from even seeking any further for answers. What if they have been wrong all these years? Their credibility would crumble. And while I am certainly no proponent of most of these groups in general, I do believe there are very good things that some of them do, in some areas. If the emperor has no clothes in this instance, what impact would it have on the health and well-being of certain people in other arenas (for example, maternal and infant health, breastfeeding, etc)?
Good points.

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I agree that such a study would be interesting. There are just so many other questions and disincentives for either camp to go there.
Like I said in a previous post, I just see such huge incentives for both sides. It makes me wonder why it hasn't been done.
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#10 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 03:49 PM
 
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To do such a study, you would need a very large pool of unvaxed people who were living in the same area, such that they was no "herd immunity". Otherwise, the conclusion that the unvaxed didn't get any diseases for which there were vaccinations could be simply based on the fact that everyone around them was vaccinated.

I think it would be hard to find such a community. Maybe the Amish? Waldorf or other alternative schools? But these communities are not that big.

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#11 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 03:54 PM
 
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Because, in order for it to be considered a reliable study, it has to be placebo-controlled, double-blind. That is the gold-standard in research.

So basically they have to randomly assign people to a group, one group gets fully vaccinated and one group gets only placebos. Neither group knows who they are, the drs don't know which group their patients are in. The parents get no say in what group they're in. Both groups still get the same number of injections, but one is only saline. So basically an entire dr's office will be shipped only saline injections, packaged plainly (saying "Study XYZ, DTaP"), and the dr will inject his patients with it, thinking that they are giving them DTaP. The other dr's office will have similar shipments (saying "Study XYZ, DTaP") and will inject his patients with it, thinking again that they are giving them DTaP. Then, a third party (hence the double-blind part) will conduct the research on the overall health of both groups at yearly intervals (or some other pre-arranged timeframe), comparing things such as how often they were sick, what VPDs they contracted if any, what long-term issues developed, if any, etc.

A retroactive study could be done that reviews records to compare outcomes to groups that are fully vaccinated vs not vaccinated, but that introduces a whole bunch more variables. Are the unvaxed kids really unvaxed? Or maybe they got vaxes at a health dept and not the ped? Why are they unvaxed? Is there some sort of medical reason that isn't dictated properly in the charts? Or is it because the parents come from a family with risk factors (high asthma/allergy/autoimmune) so those kids might skew the numbers by having some of those hereditary conditions despite being unvaxed.

Do you see how a retroactive study could be difficult? That's why the standard in research is double-blind, placebo controlled. And that isn't ethically possible.

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#12 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 07:29 PM
 
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I have seen where Amish populations were compared with general populations. There are no nut allergies in Amish communities. I am unsure if they even have much for Autism, yet, they are not dying off of Tetanus (despite all the farm work and barn raising they are doing) or Polio or otherwise.
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#13 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 07:45 PM
 
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To mine data from a self-selected group (those that have chosen not to vax) to have usable data at all you would have to correct for as many variables as possible (lifestyle, socioeconomic factors, diet, other health care choices, etc)

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#14 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 08:30 PM
 
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I disagree. There's money in it, for both sides. Many anti-vax groups could easily afford to fund such a study, and it certainly wouldn't be a financial strain on pharmaceutical companies.
I would be soooo curious to know which anti-vax groups have the money to fund this.

I know Generation Rescue did a phone survey at one time, but I didn't think this type of study fit the bill within the research world.


I don't think 501c3 organizations that are not universities or think tanks fund that level of study, right? Aren't most studies financed by corporate grants given to universities or government agencies?

There was a bill introduced for the government to find this study, but it hasn't passed yet.

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#15 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 08:35 PM
 
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To do such a study, you would need a very large pool of unvaxed people who were living in the same area, such that they was no "herd immunity". Otherwise, the conclusion that the unvaxed didn't get any diseases for which there were vaccinations could be simply based on the fact that everyone around them was vaccinated.

I think it would be hard to find such a community. Maybe the Amish? Waldorf or other alternative schools? But these communities are not that big.
But the point of the study is not to prove the efficacy of vaccines based on reported cases of illness.

I think the point is a comparative study of the two groups and the rate of occurrence of various condition: asthma, allergies, autism, diabetes, arthritis, etc.

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8_dZe...layer_embedded

Research is on the way, from an anti-vaccine group NVIC. She mentions various things this research fund will do (data collection systems, small studies, and a 10 year clinical study) that this research fund may cover.
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#17 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 09:14 PM
 
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Because, in order for it to be considered a reliable study, it has to be placebo-controlled, double-blind. That is the gold-standard in research.
The pro-vax science community does not agree with this. None of their studies "showing" vaccines don't cause autism are placebo-controlled, double blind studies.

Yes, that's the gold standard, but it is not even close to the only type of valid study possible. Yes, there would be a lot of variables. So naturally, the scientists who conduct retrospective studies need to be very smart (and ethical) to conduct a good study. But a good study is very much possible.

And if they leave the Amish out of it, and study the thousands of patients at Homefirst in Chicago, as well as random people like me who don't vaccinate, they don't have to account for any special genes.
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#18 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 09:25 PM
 
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Many anti-vax groups could easily afford to fund such a study, and it certainly wouldn't be a financial strain on pharmaceutical companies. And they'd both have something to gain from it if the results turned out the way they wanted. For pharm companies it would increase consumer confidence in their products, thereby leading to more sales of vaccines. For anti-vax organizations it would increase consumer confidence in them, leading people to be more likely to buy their products and treatments.

So yeah, I also wonder why such a study hasn't been done.
I don't know of any anti-vax organization that could easily afford such a study, but NVIC is working on one, and they are currently fundraising for the study.

Pharm companies have A LOT to lose, obviously, by doing such a study. What if the results were not in their favor, which is very likely? They also would have very little to gain, as the vast majority of Americans already vaccinate, and government policies are already on their side.

As for this:
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For anti-vax organizations it would increase consumer confidence in them, leading people to be more likely to buy their products and treatments.
What in the world are you talking about?
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#19 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 10:30 PM
 
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I would be soooo curious to know which anti-vax groups have the money to fund this.

I know Generation Rescue did a phone survey at one time, but I didn't think this type of study fit the bill within the research world.


I don't think 501c3 organizations that are not universities or think tanks fund that level of study, right? Aren't most studies financed by corporate grants given to universities or government agencies?

There was a bill introduced for the government to find this study, but it hasn't passed yet.
I'm not really sure how much a study like this would cost, really? But I know that, for example, Generation Rescue paid $100,000 to put an ad in the NYT. So it seems like they'd have the money- or at least be able to get ahold of it- for something much more important.
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#20 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 10:33 PM
 
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As for this:

For anti-vax organizations it would increase consumer confidence in them, leading people to be more likely to buy their products and treatments.

What in the world are you talking about?
What part of that statement are you having a hard time understanding?
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#21 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 11:46 PM
 
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What part of that statement are you having a hard time understanding?
I went to NVIC's website, and didn't find any products or services that they sell. I think you can order books with minimum donations. Does that count? I went to Generation Rescue's site, and they do have links to buy things, like T-shirts, books, and nutritional products for injured children. If more people were convinced that vaccines caused harm, fewer people would vaccinate, there would be fewer injured children, and less demand for products for injured children. My children are unvaccinated, and I don't anticipate them needing anything from Generation Rescue's website. But do you really think these organizations exist in order to sell t-shirts, books, and some supplements? If they did a vax/unvaxed study, the goal would be to help children, not to sell more t-shirts, lol.
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#22 of 44 Old 07-19-2010, 11:51 PM
 
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I'm not really sure how much a study like this would cost, really? But I know that, for example, Generation Rescue paid $100,000 to put an ad in the NYT. So it seems like they'd have the money- or at least be able to get ahold of it- for something much more important.
Just because an organization spends $100,000 on something doesn't mean it has the many millions of dollars necessary for a study. And if it does happen to have a few million, it doesn't mean the charity should necessarily abandon all their current programs and direct all their resources to a study.

Watch this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8_dZe...layer_embedded regarding NVIC's study. I can't even imagine how many millions of dollars that is going to cost.
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#23 of 44 Old 07-20-2010, 12:41 AM
 
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I went to NVIC's website, and didn't find any products or services that they sell. I think you can order books with minimum donations. Does that count? I went to Generation Rescue's site, and they do have links to buy things, like T-shirts, books, and nutritional products for injured children. If more people were convinced that vaccines caused harm, fewer people would vaccinate, there would be fewer injured children, and less demand for products for injured children. My children are unvaccinated, and I don't anticipate them needing anything from Generation Rescue's website. But do you really think these organizations exist in order to sell t-shirts, books, and some supplements? If they did a vax/unvaxed study, the goal would be to help children, not to sell more t-shirts, lol.
You can put whatever motives behind it you want, but profit is profit. I believe that many, if not most, in the anti-vax organizations are trying to help children. I believe the same for doctors and scientists. I also believe it's naive to categorize a group of people as good or bad. So it's relevant that anti-vax orgs make money off of their treatments, but that doesn't mean that they're not trying to help children. The exact same thing can be said of pharmaceutical companies.

It's my understanding that those orgs, like Generation Rescue, don't treat exclusively vax damaged people. And many people with autism, or autistic children, don't believe that vaccinations caused the autism, so they wouldn't be interested in treatments that "heal" them of vaccines. And many people don't believe that the treatments they suggest (chelation, DAN diet, etc) will help at all because they trust the science that's said that. However, if that same science was proved to be wrong about vaccines then that would make some more trusting of the people who have been claiming that all along. Along with the treatments that they were previously skeptical of. Alternative medicine is already a $34 billion a year industry, but it could be a lot more if people lose confidence in the scientific community.
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#24 of 44 Old 07-20-2010, 12:46 AM
 
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Just because an organization spends $100,000 on something doesn't mean it has the many millions of dollars necessary for a study.

Watch this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8_dZe...layer_embedded regarding NVIC's study. I can't even imagine how many millions of dollars that is going to cost.
Yeah, it's kind of hard to say because we're talking about a theoretical study. So it could be huge... or not. Also, like I said, I don't know the actual amounts that those orgs have. Do you? Or are we all just speculating? I know that sounds harsh, but I really don't mean it like that. I don't know if their finances are public knowledge. If anyone knows, can I have a link?
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#25 of 44 Old 07-20-2010, 01:08 AM
 
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You can put whatever motives behind it you want, but profit is profit.
So you think the increased t-shirt sales would make up for the many millions of dollars spent on a study?


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So it's relevant that anti-vax orgs make money off of their treatments, but that doesn't mean that they're not trying to help children. The exact same thing can be said of pharmaceutical companies.
Are you seriously comparing non-profit anti-vax organizations to the multi-multi-billion dollar pharmaceutical industry?

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It's my understanding that those orgs, like Generation Rescue, don't treat exclusively vax damaged people.
I was unaware that Generation Rescue treated anybody medically.
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I don't know if their finances are public knowledge. If anyone knows, can I have a link?
http://www2.guidestar.org/
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Dr. Dean Edell, the media doc, an ophthamologist by training has repeatedly said for over thirty years that such a study will NEVER be done because doctors do not want to deprive any child of the benefits of vaccination.

In the discussions I have had with medical doctors and drug manufacturers, such a study will never be done because an immune response cannot be faked with a placebo. That is their pre-eminent excuse.

Dr. Mendelsohn said that such a study has and will never be done. Therefore vaccines belong to a catagory of treatments referred to as unproven, if one wants to be kind; if one is to be accurate, vaccines are quackery.
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#28 of 44 Old 07-20-2010, 02:42 AM
 
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So you think the increased t-shirt sales would make up for the many millions of dollars spent on a study?
No. I explained in my earlier post some of the ways they'd make money. You think the only money they get is from T-shirt sales?


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Are you seriously comparing non-profit anti-vax organizations to the multi-multi-billion dollar pharmaceutical industry?
Yes, I was comparing aspects of the two. They both have financial incentive and humanitarian incentive.

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I was unaware that Generation Rescue treated anybody medically.
They direct people to doctors that they approve of:


http://www.generationrescue.org/recovery/doctors

Thank you for the link that shows the finances of charities! But it seems that you have to have a membership to check. I've tried searching some, but I'm not able to find anywhere else that provides the financial records of non-profits...
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#29 of 44 Old 07-20-2010, 02:45 AM
 
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Therefore vaccines belong to a catagory of treatments referred to as unproven, if one wants to be kind; if one is to be accurate, vaccines are quackery.
So you don't believe that vaccines provide a reduction in the illnesses they target?
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#30 of 44 Old 07-20-2010, 08:24 AM
 
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No. I explained in my earlier post some of the ways they'd make money. You think the only money they get is from T-shirt sales?
Well, I'd rather spend my money on homeopathic remedies for my kids (wait, I already do) than spend it on vaccines. I had to run out and get some natural honey for my daughter's pink eye. That cost me a whopping $8.92. But, it doesn't expire and I can use it for cuts and scrapes, as well and not worry about adverse side effects, etc.

The vast majority of things that are sold are vitamins/supplements, etc. So, yeah, they'll see their sales go up. But, it would still be nice to see what the results of the study would be.
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