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September 21, 2023

Mandy Nolans Soapbox: To Vex or Vax?

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Mandy Nolans Soapbox: To Vex or Vax

If Shakespeare wrote a play to sum up the underlying angst of Mullumbimby for his tragi-drama ‘I can’t believe it’s not’ HAMlet, his first line would be ‘To Vax or not to Vax. That is the question.’ I vax.

For some people in this community that’s pretty well on par with coming out as a paedophile. I know there will be people who suggest that I am brainwashed by Big Pharma (shit! I have used Pantene!); that I’m some sort of chemical-loving chump (I still adore Acid); that I’ve swallowed the sales pitch (increase in public vaccination programs = drop in communicable illness = seems to work.)

Recently some conspiracy enthusiast called me a ‘chem trail denier’. Like it’s a thing. I know some of you will think I am crazy, but I trust science. Science has long served humanity. Science is the reason there’s this invention called the car, or that I can fly in an aeroplane, or that DNA can be mapped. Science tells me smoking gives you cancer. (Weirdly we know that smoking kills us but we have no problem doing that. Corporations have been killing us with smoking-related cancers yet we continue to light up? Are people who sell ciggies lung-cancer denialists?)

In Mullumbimby the VAX conversation is terrifying. I was thinking about writing this years ago but I was too scared. Scared of being trolled, abused and bullied. I decided that wasn’t a good enough reason not to write my take on the vexing vax issue. (Is there a vaccination for stopping fear?) I know there’ll be a bulge in my inbox (also existing thanks to science) with links to YouTube videos that prove I’m wrong. (Interestingly this internet thing has its roots in science too…).

The internet is many things: it’s entertainment, it’s gossip, it’s porn, it’s intrigue, it’s titillation… but one thing it’s not is a source of is definitive, regulated and rigorously tested information on public health. And many posts cited as information were possibly put there by a drunk person. Or a fellow conspiracist.

I listened to an ABC documentary years ago on infant mortality in Rwanda and how it went from the highest in Africa to one of the lowest after introducing an incentivised immunisation program. To me that makes it clear that vaccination saves lives. It doesn’t mean that it’s not without side effects in some individuals, but across the general population vaccination promotes improvements in health by reducing the harmful effects of serious illness and disease on the general population.

I guess that’s where the argument gets fractious. Indviduals are asked to act taking the ‘common’ good into account rather than their ‘personal’ good. I understand the conundrum.

I think people who vaccinate and those who don’t have more in common than they realise. Both groups are attempting to do what they believe is in the interests of their child’s health. I made a decision on the subject years ago based on what I saw as evidence on one side and what seemed like conspiratorial ravings of the paranoid on the other. I don’t mean to be rude but some of the anti-vax stuff seems a bit nuts. It often sits on the table with a whole raft of wild assertions – like 9/11 was a hoax as was the moon landing, that Sandy Hook shooting was staged… I just can’t go there. I don’t believe the world is such a sinister place. While I accept Big Pharma is definitely about profit, it’s also in the business of keeping people alive. There’s no profit in dead people. You can’t grow up to buy and drive cars, drink beer and smoke ciggies if you’re dead. I’m not that cynical that I think the government or Big Pharma are conspiring to kill us, one Whooping Cough shot at a time. If the government wants to kill us they’ll just let us keep smoking and living lonely lives without meaning in asbestos houses eating processed food and sobbing into our beers.

People clearly believe what they choose to believe. Whether it’s factual or not. Just look at Donald Trump: he’s made a presidency out of it. Belief these days isn’t about credible research. It’s about trends. It’s about what our ‘influencers’ believe. In fact a recent study on vaccination trends shows that whether or not you vaccinate has more to do with whether or not your friends vaccinate than any other factor. That seems like a co-dependent way to do complex thinking.

One of the pervasive beliefs is ‘vaccination causes autism’. This allegation was thrown around years ago, and even though it was shown to be utter bullshit, the stigma has pretty well NEVER worn off. Many people choose to continue to believe it even thought it’s been absolutely proven untrue.

I vaccinate myself, my kids, my dog and even my cat and everyone seems to be doing okay. In fact when it comes to general health, we’re pretty robust. So far neither the kids nor the animals have developed vaccination-related autism, although I have to admit the cat is a bit standoffish. She’s downright antisocial. And she can’t read yet. But apparently that’s normal for a cat. I guess it’s what you choose to believe.

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  1. WELL SAID and thankyou for putting it out there for the parents in the byron shite area that do vax and get looked down on for doing so!!

  2. When you ask Individuals to act for the common good, and even science cannot deny that there are risks associated with vaccines too, you need to make sure you provide for those that have been damaged by vaccines for the common good of all!

  3. Well then… science has done a lot for humanity; that ‘lot’ has not been all good, sadly; do I need to list them?
    Big Pharma and most ‘big corporations’ are really about their bottom line as we all know and as the current Royal commission is proving. They don’t give a rats about people.
    Big Pharma is making billions out of ‘disease’ relatively little, in comparison, out of ‘cures’. Or health (health is not simply lack of illness.)
    Managing disease is where the money is … not in curing disease. So where do you think all the research billions goes.
    Disease management is an income stream for the life of the patient their life is important for that reason alone. Well from Big Pharma’s point of view.
    Curing disease is a huge loss to Big Pharma and Big Medicine and their minions.
    With no chronically ill people buying drugs for all their ailments for all their life billions would be lost in sales.

    To believe they are in it for ‘love of humanity’ is just plain ignorance.
    Clearly their have been some amazing advances in medical science in recent years …. discovering the benefits of the microbiome could change modern medicine away from the magic bullet approach. But sadly research is dependant on money. And money from ‘vested interest’ in the drugs that are making billions is unlikely.
    If ‘Health’ was the genuine outcome of Government then thinks could be different. But Governments are dependant on ‘Big business’ for money in the form of ‘political donations’.
    It’s money not Health that is important.

    In light of all I’ve said above I really don’t trust the so called science behind vaccines. It is only as good as those who use it and the knowledge they possess at the time.
    Science is so able to be manipulated to make money by Big Business; it can’t be relied upon to be used in a legitimate way in the best interests of the populous.
    Death from ‘medical error’ is one of the highest causes of death in Australia.

    Worth thinking about when ‘risking’ your children lives/health.

    • Mmmmm…

      So are you suggesting that all the recent cures for things like cervical cancer, or the fact that woman aren’t dying in child birth or – i just read today about a trial that has been successful in treating a woman with advanced breast cancer – aren’t about curing diseases??

      This is such a first world argument… and Yes, I think we all get the greed and lack of morality of some (if not most) corporations, but it feels like such a simplified argument to shift blame back to them and the politicians… Easy targets I appreciate, but it misses the key point. As a community, regardless of what the corporations are allegedly ‘doing to us’ there are vaccinations for things like whooping cough, polio, measles smallpox and the like, that have killed millions… or alternatively, if its more digestible, the corporations and politicians need us to be well so we can keep consuming, purchasing and ‘growing’. I would imagine if finding a cure for diseases is worth more money across the whole economy than not. Dont forget the same corporations own other businesses, that also thrive from people being healthy…

      BTW I just did a simple search on ‘what diseases have been cured’ on google.. seems contraindicated to your argument im afraid…

      • women are dying in childbirth sadly we have lost two this year to C sections.. now that is another debate drs and the extra money they get from Csections..

    • Just to add to my earlier comment.
      If the general population weren’t as unhealthy as they currently are the need to be concerned about mumps measles and whooping cough would not be such an issue.
      Clearly we are ignoring the elephant in the room. And closing the gate after the horse has bolted.
      Latest figures claim that obesity is at an alarmingly high rate among our children. But we do nothing and spend nothing on addressing the problem.
      Hoping for some magic wonder drug will fix it.
      Health is not simply the lack of disease; it is our ongoing responsibility to maintain good health. Which involves primarily a good diet free of toxins i.e. fresh fruit and vegetables with every meal, avoid processed food, toxic beverages like alcohol and sugar laden soft drinks.
      While the pro-vaxes are sipping their pinot noir watching the sun dip over the horizon they are also poisoning their bodies; more so if it is a nightly event. Way more dangerous then a bout of measles or mumps.
      If it is a regular habit the risk of functional alcoholism is very real… and sadly already afflicting millions of Australians; mostly middle aged women, apparently.
      If we are going to legislate to force mass medication on the populous to try and address the ‘risk’ of disease.
      I suggest we legislate to ban all the real ‘risk’ factors first and then see if there is a problem.

      For too long we have been fooled into thinking that we don’t need to be personally responsible for our health…. that the medical profession has it covered with wonder drugs.

      WRONG they don’t… don’t believe me… get your head out of the [BS] and look around.

      Cheers and good health.

  4. As you say Mandy, you had an opportunity to decide whether to vac or not. It’s quite different today. Mandatory vaccinations loom and meanwhile financial coercion is the government go to. So the free opportunity to chose is being diminished, and many people on all sides of the debate are concerned by this fact.
    You have over simplified the issue by dividing the opinions between anti-vax and pro-vax. You have ignored the pro-choice argument.
    Finally, you say legitimate sources of information are not available on the internet. Sorry but you’re wrong. I can find plenty of scientific peer-reviewed studies to allow me to make an informed decision. Informed consent is an underlying principle of the medical profession.

  5. The term science comes from the Latin word scientia, meaning “knowledge”.

    If anyone needs to question knowlege, they would do best to become a scientist first.
    Then work their way through the appropriate peer group assesment processes in order to further develope scientific understanding (knowledge).

    Otherwise, they would be best to shut up.

  6. Lots of points raised here Mandy. There is a clear correlation between clean drinking water, good sewerage and the decline in polio infections for example, but the vax industry takes all the credit. Bill Gates has been vaxing Indian villages for the last few years with no decline in infection rates. (some studies say they have increased!) Why didn’t he spend the many millions on fixing their water and sewage problems instead? Big business connections I suppose…
    Saying you vaccinate and all is well so far isn’t that good an approach: some things take ages to manifest like smoking! “hey I’ve been smoking fags for 30 years with no problems” dies a year later…
    The model of vaxing isn’t to get the overall health of the person fixed, it’s the ‘take a pill’ model.
    Giving 6 week old babies vaxes for hepatitis is insane so you can’t be surprised that people distrust the vax industry which makes billions a year from ever increasing amounts of vaxes. Babies now get 20 or 30 vaxes when we got 5 or 6. Yes I’m old..
    But I agree that the crazy opposition isn’t good. We all want the same good outcomes for our kids. But some of us just don’t trust the buggers or their ‘science’ because it is carefully edited in their favour. XX

    • Very good points but you’ll find that babies are vaccinated at birth for Hep B, not at 6 weeks. Even more insane!! I questioned a medical professor about why this is so and he said it’s a cheaper option just to vaccinate all babies at birth than to scan all pregnant women for Hep B and vaccinate their babies. I totally lost faith in the government and motives of big pharma at that point.

    • Can you please post the information on Bill Gates’ vaccination program and the decline/increase in disease?

  7. Good on you Mandy!

    The jury is out…the autism scare was a law firm instigated fraud from the start and even Whitehead who was paid to publish the initial totally flawed research admits “There is no link between autism and vaccinations”.

    How many children have suffered and died because of this? If we had an Ebola outbreak would anti-vaccers hold Ebola Parties to share the disease? You have all been duped! Do some real research before joining the bandwagon to nowhere.

    BBC Healthcheck Vaccination Story 20 Year On


  8. Thank you Mandy for your stand, you do not stand alone, many of us are afraid to stand up to the anti vaxers its difficult when some them we are rather fond of.
    Still it does go with those other strange beliefs, anti scientific polemic. Too tedious to debate, some people just love to take the contrary view.
    Your rant is refreshing like a rain shower on a dusty road.

  9. Hear Here Mandy. My favourite anti-vax anecdote is another algorithm generated Facebook feed shared by an anti vax friend. These anti-vaxers receive this information all the time. That’s why they are in the know 😉 I followed the trail to the expert source, the ‘Professor’, only to find that her much publicised and lauded opinion in anti-vaxing circles was borne of her expertise in feminist discourse analysis. Seriously. A wonderful social science but hardly the stuff of vax scientific expertise. Conspiracy theories [irritate] me and leave me intellectually dissatisfied. You are either one of the naive believers or enlightened – and not much else.

  10. Well done Mandy. These words have to be spoken. Next time someone has a go at you for being Anti-Vax ask them if their parents vaccinated them, or if their parents were vaccinated. That could be a pretty good reason why they are still alive and healthy and haven’t died of diphtheria, polio, cholera, smallpox, whooping cough or any number of deadly diseases.
    It’s interesting that Anti-Vax people reject the science and empirical evidence that vaccinations work but fully accept the science of climate change. Science is not absolute but it is not far off. But people will believe what they want to believe despite proof.

  11. You are the voice of reason Mandy. Thanks for being brave enough to confront this issue. As the parent of an autistic, vaccinated child, scientific research proves that Big Pharma is not behind his condition. Across the world children are dying from preventable conditions because nervous parents are skipping their children’s vaccinations and putting the wider community at risk. Diseases that were thought to have been eradicated are reemerging because of this twisted thinking.
    A few years ago SBS aired a documentary showing that autism in babies is often latent until they suffer their first fever. Vaccination can spark a mild fever and hence a correlation was made between vaccination and autism. Indeed a child is likely to have a mild fever at some time; when teething etc but if a child develops autism it is not because of vaccination. This has been proven over and over but some untrained worried parents still believe this hocus pocus.
    Good on you and I hope your views are supported locally and you are not inundated by the crazy rantings of conspiracy theorists. The low vaccination rates in our supposedly educated community in Mullumbimby is a disgrace.

  12. Vaccines Cause Autism (peer reviewed articles)

    There is no science that shows vaccines cause Autism, except in all these published studies which show vaccines cause Autism.




    Vaccines caused autism here in this federal court case http://www.uscfc.uscourts.gov/…/opin…/ABELL.ZELLER073008.pdf
    And here page 2 http://www.uscfc.uscourts.gov/…/CAMPBELL-SMITH.MOJABI-PROFF…
    And here –

    Here are 83 cases reviewed by lawyers http://digitalcommons.pace.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi…

    Oh look here’s a dead kid compensated https://ecf.cofc.uscourts.gov/cgi-bin/show_public_doc…

    If you ever need a lawyer http://www.mctlawyers.com/vaccine-injury/cases/

    Here are 127 separate studies linking vaccines and autism. https://www.scribd.com/…/124-Research-Papers-Supporting-the…

    Read this about Hannah Brusewitz case and how she was harmed by DTP

    Supreme Court Unavoidably Unsafe

    A dose-response relationship between organic mercury exposure from thimerosal-containing vaccines and neurodevelopmental disorders.

    Relative trends in hospitalizations and mortality among infants by the number of vaccine doses and age, based on the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), 1990-2010.

    Is infant immunization a risk factor for childhood asthma or allergy?

    Infant mortality rates regressed against number of vaccine doses routinely given: Is there a biochemical or synergistic toxicity?

    Infection, vaccines and other environmental triggers of autoimmunity.

    DTP with or after measles vaccination is associated with increased in-hospital mortality in Guinea-Bissau.

    Measles outbreak in a vaccinated school population: epidemiology, chains of transmission and the role of vaccine failures.

    A positive association found between autism prevalence and childhood vaccination uptake across the U.S. population.

    Hepatitis B vaccination of male neonates and autism diagnosis, NHIS 1997-2002.

    Abnormal measles-mumps-rubella antibodies and CNS autoimmunity in children with autism.

    The plausibility of a role for mercury in the etiology of autism: a cellular perspective

    Detection of RNA of Mumps Virus during an Outbreak in a Population with a High Level of Measles, Mumps, and Rubella Vaccine Coverage

    A case series of children with apparent mercury toxic encephalopathies manifesting with clinical symptoms of regressive autistic disorders.

    Aluminum in the central nervous system (CNS): toxicity in humans and animals, vaccine adjuvants, and autoimmunity.

    Unvaccinated Children are Healthier

    Self-Organized Criticality Theory of Autoimmunity

    Combination MMRV vaccine linked with 2-fold risk of seizures

    Impact of environmental factors on the prevalence of autistic disorder after 1979

    Increased risk of noninfluenza respiratory virus infections associated with receipt of inactivated influenza vaccine.

    Effectiveness of trivalent inactivated influenza vaccine in influenza-related hospitalization in children: a case-control study.

    Speciation of methyl- and ethyl-mercury in hair of breastfed infants acutely exposed to thimerosal-containing vaccines.

    Comparison of VAERS fetal-loss reports during three consecutive influenza seasons

  13. Good on you Mandy, gutsy taking on the folk of ” Salem on sea” you might have to leave town until the
    smoke settles!

  14. Oh here here! The big Pharma company (That puts a fortune into research) that finds a cure for Cancer or diabetes etc will make a bonanza selling it. They are in it for the money, sure but they haven’t gone backwards by selling antibiotics for one second. Be informed. Vaccinate.

    • Just to clarify the conspiracy confusion.
      Having read most of the pro-vax comments they seem to be pretty reliant on the success of the polio vaccine. And rightly so, it was.
      But lets not get too excited and drop our guard and surrender to the Medical and Pharma industries.
      They still can’t be totally trusted or ever will be while they put profit before people… they have stuffed up too many times and continue too; look at the death rate from ‘medical errors’.

      Too imagine that the word science sanctifies their mistakes is simple ignorance of science.
      It is totally dependant on the knowledge behind it.
      We know that there is way more that we don’t know about the human physiology than we do.
      As an example of our profound ignorance; only in the last decade have we discovered that ‘gut bugs’ are a major part of the human immune system.
      From this knowledge we now learn that medicines (anti-biotics) we use kill these bugs en-mass.
      Clearly that compromises our immunity to disease.
      With a depleted ability to fight off pathogens we have become overly dependant on Big Pharma and his bottle of side effects oh I mean ‘wonderful synthetic drugs’ kof kof…

      The microbiome (gut bugs) have to live on something to survive.
      And as a terrible shock to all those junk food fans and processed food junkies and functional alcoholics. They don’t do well on that rubbish.
      Lentils are an example of their favoured tucker.

      Sorry to be so provocative but ignorance really upsets me.

  15. Thank you Mandy, for speaking out. Those of us that do vaccinate in this region need to speak up often in favour of science. Tom Hain says above “Bill Gates has been vaxing Indian villages for the last few years with no decline in infection rates. ” In fact, India has been polio free for about 4 years: http://www.searo.who.int/india/topics/poliomyelitis/fasweek142018.pdf

    To some people, facts do not matter if they do not fit the narrative they like. If sanitation was the sole reason for the decrease in polio cases, why have the poorest communities in India become polio free? How is it that vaccine preventable diseases miraculously went on the decline after each of the vaccines were introduced, after our sanitation issues were addressed?

  16. I really think chem trails and vaccinations can be combined to be more wholistic and alleviate needle stress.
    A few more chemicals in the sky and we will all be immune to disease. They could put flouride in the clouds too. It would save all these arguments because officially chem trails don’t exist. Thus they can deliver everything we are scared of….even paranoia.
    Love ya Mandy x

  17. good on u Mandy it’s depressing to see the basic ignorance and fear generated by the poorly informed -or the just plain loopy. I hope more people will stand up and explain what herd immunology means . Brian Cox recently said science is a fact -not some alternative fact but a fact! His example was to say that if we look a t passengers on an aircraft and one gets up and demands to land the plane would u trust him? Your paranoid commentators are a real worry god help us all -pun intended..

    • Terry… please… you are the one sounding pretty loopy.
      Just because someone says that vaccination is scientific doesn’t make it safe. Scientists make mistakes, they aren’t perfect. The ‘science’ is according to the scientists, that’s why we have peer review and double blind studies. To find the errors and improve the ‘science’.
      Clearly given the high numbers of infants injured by vaccinations there are errors that need to be addressed.

      If they are not and the manufacturers are not made accountable they will continue, and they are BTW, to treat the dead and injured simply as a small price to pay.
      We now have vaccinations for way too many things that a healthy immune system could easily cope with.

      The popularity of these drugs from the population is primarily because we now have a dependance on the medical industry.
      Why… because we don’t know any better. We have not listened to common sense. That essentially a healthy human immune system is incredibly powerful and can fight off most pathogens.
      We are lazy and irresponsible when it comes to our own bodies proper maintenance. We treat our motor vehicles with more care than our bodies.

      I mean would you put anything but what is recommended for your car in the tank or on your wheels no you value your and your kids lives bald tyres are dangerous seat belts must be worn. Petrol doesn’t run well in a diesel motor.

      Oh I hear you cry… I regularly go to the doctor. (who gives you antibiotics) that kill your gut bugs that aid your immune system.
      And the cycle continues. Aided by you further poisoning your body with toxic junk food and no fruit or fresh vegetables.

      Top it all off with toxic beverages and tobacco.
      Your only hope (you think) is the (wonderful) drugs the doc gives you.
      We have become dependant on toxicity.
      Little wonder that obesity is out of control along with diabetes, dementia, cancer and too many auto immune diseases to many to list.

  18. On’ya Mandy,
    As I read the heading, I instantly thought “Thank goodness your far away from this town”. I do not believe in anyway that vaccination causes autism. They may be the bad reaction but there are bad reactions to many things, take the humble peanut that can take a life in moments. As for chemtrails….
    Those fears and axieties are enough to make one physically sick through worry.

  19. I used to vax but once it hit 48 before leaving school I thought about it, really thought about it as the vitamin K shot hit my 1 hr old baby then the attempt at hepatitis c shot, i asked what for ..Then horror of horrors the core temperature had to be taken this was just a thermometer up the anus .I stopped the lovely lady and said that He had just arrived on the planet and you are anally raping him so you can tick a box ? (which was her scientific duty to do)..I felt like butting her and then run out of the hospital with baby boy screaming like a banshee..I relinquished that idea as mum looked irritated…Im pretty sure they did all the above after That weirdo over protective father left.. as I was “over reacting”..But Im a bloke..I agree Mandy, Science is fantastic and I trust it implicitly..Scientists however.. are bought sold and whore themselves daily..That cure for cancer really is taking its time..

  20. Just brilliant Mandy. I love you for this. You’re a brave, intelligent woman. And you’ve probably saved a life or two in the process.
    Great journalism, so clear and powerful.
    Thank you.
    (I can’t wait for someone to comment that you’re being paid by Big Pharma to write this!!!)

  21. With vaccination, a few will have a bad reaction and some of them will die.
    Without vaccination, many did, do and always will suffer and die of preventable diseases.
    The death of any child is tragic.
    I’m for the many, not the few.

  22. Well written Mandy.

    Vaccine damaged children is a myth but deaf, intellectually disabled, physically disabled, reproductively sterile and dead babies or children is a measurable reality from earlier times when Australian children used to catch polio, rubella, mumps and whooping cough, just to name a few diseases. The rarity of these diseases in our community now has given self-indulgent conspiracy enthusiasts the safe space from which to criticize vaccines without evidence other than prejudice against mainstream science, medicine and public policy.

    I work in Cambodia where over the last decade they’ve gone from no vaccinations to 90% or better coverage for about 12 diseases that can be vaccinated for. Far from this country seeing a surge in autism or other types of ‘vaccine damage’, there has been almost complete eradication of some diseases such as measles and an incredibly grateful nation of adults who know what it is like to watch their children die from preventable diseases.

  23. Just take a look at which country has the highest vaxination rate in the so called first world. The answer is the USA and if you also check to see which first world country has the highest infant mortality rate, the answer is also the USofA.

  24. Well said Mandy. It’s sad that it took you many years to work up the courage to write this column. It’s sad, because it’s clear, you were held by the fear of what the peace, love and light wholesome nature loving mob will inflict upon you for voicing your beliefs. And you were right. Good luck, but know there are plenty of us out here completely supporting you and your outlook on the subject.
    Written on a very nifty piece of equipment, brought to you by … science.

  25. Well said Mandy N.

    I suspect that the anti-vaxers share some quixotic personality traits.

    I also think they’re very sensitive to phallic invasion of the vulnerable (needles in babies). I have some sympathy for that sensitivity.

    What I have not heard in this debate is a plea for the medical profession to make a more determined and concerted effort to provide vaccination by less invasive – and thereby lessw acutely painful – means: oral ingestion, vapour ingestion, skin absorbtion.

    And I believe that such effort not only should be made but (yes – I’m certainly going to be sexist) by female medical practitioners!

    Freud lives!

  26. I had polio when I was 8 months old. The water and sewerage in our Sydney suburban home was fine, but no polio vax available in 1952. I could fill half a page with the things I can’t do because of the effects of polio. My son had meningitis just before his 3rd birthday and just before the vax was released. I feel very concerned for unvaccinated kids. I hope they never suffer from preventable diseases with lifetime adverse consequences. But I’m pretty sure they’ll be pretty pissed off with their parent’s no vax decision if they do.

  27. I have a family member mentally disabled from a Vax. One day a bright shinning 5 year old boy the next a zombie. All I n the name of science.

  28. without entering the argument…who has read a vaccine insert?
    Lets do the science and research what these ingredients are and ask the question if these substances should be injected into a child.
    Aluminium, Formaldehyde, Ammonium Sulphate, Polysorbate80, Thyomersal (mercury),Glyphosphate, MSG,
    Animal and human DNA fragments, viruses, bacteria yeast, anti-biotics, genetically modified yeast and more weird ingredients to name a few. Those children who have less ability to excrete these poisons accumulate them, getting worse with each injection.
    Regressive autism, behavioural problems and allergies are common results after neuro-toxins have been repeatedly injected. Please research each ingredient above, then multiply by the amount of shots and booster shots, often given multiples at the time.
    Autism is actually listed as a possible side effect.

    List of Vaccination-induced Neurological disorders:
    Meningitis Paralysis
    Paralytis polio
    Ms Gullain Barre Syndrome
    Hyperactivity – ADD, LD
    Demyelinization diseases
    Auto-immune Diseases Epilepsy
    Convulsions – Seizures
    Mental confusion – lowered IQ

    I met Dr Viera Scheibner, respected research scientist, who researched vaccination. She and her husband came across vaccine related cot death by accident while researching something else. She read and brought together over 2000 research papers by universities around the globe, Her result? Vaccines are an irresponsible assault on the immune system. Read her book ‘Vaccination’.

    I have watched footage of healthy babies regressing into autism after usually a bundle of vaccines given at the same time. I’ve met families with vaccine damaged children. Yes i have done much research, attended conferences and talked to parents.
    The only study I have read on vaccinated against non-vaccinated children quotes the unvaccinated being healthier, less allergies and less neurological issues.

  29. Hi Mandy We are in total support of what you are saying. Even to mention in certain circles that you DO vaccinate your children gets very hostile reactions. Pharmaceutical companies are in it for the money , of course, but that does not mean that they want to poison us. This is really a very limited thinking. Vaccination saved humanity from Polio for example, it did not disappear because of positive thinking. And i wonder about “choice” for parents, if I would have grown up with Polio because my parents decided that it would be better not to vaccinate me , I would have begged to differ. Great that you had the guts to “come out”

  30. Tom, Barry and Raw – citations needed. We have socialised healthcare in Australia, so there is no money in keeping people sick. Every script for type 2 diabetes medication – which could have been prevented or even reversed early in the disease by actions that are entirely the responsibility of the patient – cost the government and therefore the taxpayer money. Health care is in the deficit side of the budget, not the profit.

    When you say things like “I don’t trust the ‘so called’ science behind vaccines” all you’re really saying is that you don’t understand it. And that’s fine, not everyone has the capacity to understand it, just like I don’t really understand how my car works. But I trust my mechanic, and I certainly wouldn’t trust someone who told me that Big Mechanic was more interested in keeping my car broken than fixing it and the laws of physics are a big lie.

    Polio has been in fact eradicated from India, it was declared polio-free in 2014 by the WHO. And that’s without improvements to sewage. And if sanitation decreased smallpox, why did it wait until the 1960’s to start decreasing measles? And the 1990’s to start decreasing HiB and meningococcal? And about 2000 to start reducing rotavirus? I guess the introduction of the vaccines was coincidence.

    Your logic is flawed and your arguments have been elegant refuted – with citations – time and again. Funny how you don’t find that information when you DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH!!1!!!1

  31. We non experts need to be very careful about interpreting scientific data and forming opinion on fads. While we’re flinging around the old ‘post hoc ergo propter hoc’ fallacy though I’d note that we have one of the lowest vaccination rates in the country AND some very worrying outbreaks of things like hooping cough (which is pretty scary for parents or rellies of babies below vaccination age).

    I also wonder how polio has been absent since the inventions of those well known Big Pharma people, Salk and Sabin. Better hygiene? In fact the big outbreaks in Australia coincided with improved sanitation and standards of living so that it was even hypothesised that reduced levels of exposure and resistance were a contributor.

    Likewise, Mandy needs to be careful about trusting documentaries on the ABC. Those pinkos promulgate all sorts of dubious agendas like climate change and marriage equality!

  32. Well said Mandy! People need to be conscious children will come across risks once they get outside of the bubble, and they’ll put others at risk. It’s a community health matter, response to the process of evolution and procreation. We need to be greatful for having come this far in science.
    Good on you for putting it out there in a place where every Vax opinion seams quite biases.

  33. I’m pro science and pro thinking for myself and I have listened to a number of compelling arguments both before having children and since.

    So far I have determined that vaccinations seem to be a valid way to prevent disease.

    I have also assessed for my own children that there are many other protections they have against the diseases in question.

    I have also kept an eye on the donation reporting in politics and it’s easy to find on the AEC website if you want to check. This only refers to the clearly reported donations so obviously I can’t comment on any other benefits they provide to politicians or Doctors etc.

    My conclusion is that one should immunise if there is a compelling risk for them to contract a disease and that by contracting that disease they are at high risk of serious issues. This might include children in remote communities with poor access to therapy or people travelling to high risk countries or people with known immune deficiencies.

    So I haven’t immunised my children – and this may change if our situation changes.
    If we travel to high risk countries for example or if there is an outbreak of something serious. And this would not include chicken pox for example which both my kids have had and which has a very low complication rate.

    In summary I think the risk to my children to immunise based on commercial pressure from US/EU corporates out ways the risk (presently) to them by current exposure to their environment.

    If the Government stops taking ALL money from these companies and Doctors are prevented from having pecuniary interest in medical technology that they are touting under the guise of Government registered medical reps then I will rethink my position – again.

  34. People use the notion of science today as they used to use the authority of the bible or Papal edicts. Science is like accounting, it can be edited, presented, manipulated to present a particular view. Billions of dollars profit might inspire this (or should I be called a conspiracy theorist for such a radical idea?)

    Kuhn, a respected philosopher of science, coined the term ‘paradigm’ with regard to the nature and development of scientific thought. Scientists educated in a particular paradigm will ignore everything that contradicts it, because it can’t be true. Only when the evidence becomes overwhelming do once laughable alternatives rise to the prominence. Become the new paradigm. In this fashion, science is as subjective and fickle as it’s human creators. As is the public opinion bowing down to it.

    There is as much evidence against vaccination as for it. It depends where you look. People look for the information that backs up their preformed opinion, or supports their self interest. The safety of their adopted paradigm.

    The primary issue here is forced medication. If pro-vaxxers are immunised, why worry about those who don’t care to? Why make them eat the wafers and drink the wine.

    Forced medication is a sign of a sick society. It is not healthy to remove people’s dominion over their own body, be invasive with the contents of their blood stream.

    Mandy vaccinate yourself and your kids. And I wish you the best for it. But don’t assume the high ground with regards to others. If you are honest you have to admit, your knowledge of the science is as selective as it is secondhand. Even if you walked round in a lab coat and recited the atomic table, it is worth considering, as Malcolm Muggeridge so eloquently put it, ‘Knowledge is the most arrogant of all opinions and invariably misleading.’

    Let’s love and let love, not force ‘knowledge’ upon – or worse into – others.

  35. Go Mandy indeed! What really annoys me is that many of the parents who refuse vaccination for their children have themselves been vaccinated and enjoy the benefits thereof.

    • we are now 5 generations of a family that has never vaccinated.. grandma lived to 96 and hadnt seen a dr since she had her babies.. My mum no… grandma didnt have the money to waste or be able to get to a dr for a vax. so when my mum had kids she was like why would I do that my kids arent sick so we just didnt get them .. now my kids didnt either didnt enter my mind there now in there 30s having babies and all of a sudden the vax debate has happened.. they havent vaxed either .. we are not hippys we all have great educations own our homes pay a lot of tax.. we dont vaccinate as we dont see it as necessary just like some family’s go to church and others dont. only down side is the grand-kids cant go to daycare and the upside is I get to mind them…They earn to much to get any centrelink payments I have no idea why we are seen as these awful people .. we are just minding our own business and doing what families do love there kids and raise them to be nice people…I have 6 adult children that work in great jobs amongst the community everyday.. they are not diseased my boys are strapping young men fit healthy and very good looking ….

  36. Thank you Mandy! Already I see the faithful anti-vaxxers circling. Conflating science and the marketing/profit motive of the pharmaceutical companies is a big mistake. Yes, corporations will try and make money but not every doctor looking for a cure is hell bent on killing babies. I wonder why people accept the evidence of science on climate change but not vaccination which is demonstrably effective. You only have to talk to people old enough to remember polio. Just prior to the vaccine being introduced in the early 1950s, Australia had had its worst-polio epidemic and about 10,000 people a year – mostly children and teenagers – were coming down with polio ad there was no cure or even treatment for it. By the early 1960s polio had almost ceased to exist. No brainer!

  37. First article of yours I can not agree with. 9/11 was a fix. If fires bring down skyscrapers why did the Grenfell tower remain standing. World trade tower 7 collapse. Google it and watch, controlled demolition.

  38. Hi Tim. Aren’t you one of the “Rail trail” proponents ? I think that your comments on vaccination have as much credibility as your ravings about the benefits of a rail trail.

  39. Hi Mandy,
    well done for speaking up, it’s a discussion that should be right out front. We can trust science if we do it right. It’s a process of examining all the available information before coming to decisions. Have you noticed how any information at all critical of vaccination is relegated to the conspiracy theory pile? There are all sorts of people out there with all sorts of information, including well-credentialed scientists with extremely well founded information, many who are not anti vax per se but have serious questions about the constantly growing and insanely remunerative vaccination schedule.
    It’s interesting to see how the largest industry on the planet, that is the greatest amount of wealth and influence in the world, can manipulate the mainstream narrative, but we’ve seen it before. When the tobacco industry owned the mainstream narrative doctors told us smoking was good for us and, by the way, we shouldn’t listen to the loony conspiracy theorists, they’re full of frauds and charletons and people who want to kill your children. They ruined the careers of many scientists then and it’s happening again.
    Trust science and examine all the available information.

  40. I totally agree with Tom Hain and Raw on this one. I usually love your articles, this one i thought was well under researched. I believe our children receive way too many vaccines compare to 50 years ago. also, autism has been added to the side effects of some vaccines in their pamflets. you said you don’t believe the internet to be a source of reliable and true information. But then you base some of your own beliefs about the efficiency of vaccines on something you heard on the radio….just saying….

  41. Ps: science is also responsible for the atomic bomb, for pesticides which cause mass dying of bees and for chemical weapons….

  42. Fundamentalism and aggression on either side of the argument is not productive and it’s unfortunate that people get so angry and then lash out at others. I was in favour of vaccination until I attended a meeting in Barkers Vale in the late 1990s with Meryl Dorey. There were maybe sixty parents there. The majority were there because they had children who had been developing normally until a vaccination. The story was almost the same . . . . he/she was fine, then the vaccination, then high temperature and febrile convulsions, then it’s like the child isn’t there. Angry parents who when they reported it to their doctors were not listened to and their reports not noted because ‘it couldn’t be the vaccination’.

    The fact is that the vaccination court in the USA that has awarded As of February 1, 2017, the VICP has paid Americans $3.584 billion dollars for vaccine injury. Talking about the greater good is no comfort to parents who have seen their children decay before their eyes. And I have spoken to mothers ridden with guilt because they ‘knew’ that they should not have given their child the vaccination.

    The debate here should not be about to vax or not to vax. It should be about freedom of choice and respecting other people’s decisions. If people had healthy immune systems and healthy environments we wouldn’t even be having this conversation.

    • Hello Liora you finish your response by saying “If people had healthy immune systems and healthy environments we wouldn’t even be having this conversation.”

      I think that shows a significant misunderstanding of nature and of diseases.

      As a result of the coevolution of millions of species, humans (and other living things) have always been challenged by diseases. Our immune systems have evolved to respond to these challenges, and continue to do so. However immunity is not perfect and no combination of foods or environment can result in a disease free or totally disease controlled existence.

      The history of humanity is not one of perfectly healthy people living long and well lives.

      In recent times better access to sanitation, adequate nutrition, safer childbirth, vaccines and improved treatments has meant that child mortality has plummeted in almost every nation. Global child deaths have more than halved since 1990 (https://ourworldindata.org/child-mortality).

      • “I think that shows a significant misunderstanding of nature and of diseases.”
        Garths response to
        “If people had healthy immune systems and healthy environments we wouldn’t even be having this conversation.”

        I think Garth that you need to do some more reading and update your own misunderstanding; clearly you are in the distant past. Try a scientific magazine.

        I’d just like to add that I may have appeared to be anti vaccination. I’m not and I am.
        Immunisation against disease is the way to go in my humble opinion. We must however question the motives of the providers of the immunisation methods/products.
        If they display an unhealthy regard for the recipients of their product then clearly they don’t deserve our loyalty.

        Recently cancer has been cured in a patient by using the patients own immune cells. Now there is a ‘healthy’ step forward.

        Research into the human microbiome has shown, when brought back into balance , that it has the capacity to restore the immune systems natural capacity to heal.

  43. Hello Anonymous . You have cherry picked the internet ad nauseum now have the courage to put your name to your rant

  44. From the Associate Editor of the British Medical Journal:

    “It does matter if the vast majority of doctors or scientists agree on something. But medical journalists should be among the first to realise that while evidence matters, so too do the legitimate concerns of patients. And if patients have concerns, doubts, or suspicions — for example, about the safety of vaccines, this does not mean they are “anti-vaccine.” Anti-vaccine positions certainly exist in the world, but approaches that label anybody and everybody who raises questions about the right headedness of current vaccine policies — myself included — as “anti-vaccine” fail on several accounts.

    Firstly, they fail to accurately characterise the nature of the concern. Many parents of children with developmental disorders who question the role of vaccines had their children vaccinated. Anti-vaccination is an ideology, and people who have their children vaccinated seem unlikely candidates for the title.

    Secondly, they lump all vaccines together as if the decision about risks and benefits is the same irrespective of disease — polio, pertussis, smallpox, mumps, diphtheria, hepatitis B, influenza, varicella, HPV, Japanese encephalitis — or vaccine type — live attenuated, inactivated whole cell, split virus, high dose, low dose, adjuvanted, monovalent, polyvalent, etc. This seems about as intelligent as categorising people into “pro-drug” and “anti-drug” camps depending on whether they have ever voiced concern over the potential side effects of any drug.

    Thirdly, labelling people concerned about the safety of vaccines as “anti-vaccine” risks entrenching positions. The label (or its derogatory derivative “anti-vaxxer”) is a form of attack. It stigmatises the mere act of even asking an open question about what is known and unknown about the safety of vaccines.

    Fourthly, the label too quickly assumes that there are “two sides” to every question, and that the “two sides” are polar opposites. This “you’re either with us or against us” thinking is unfit for medicine. Many parents who deliberate on decisions regarding their children’s health ultimately make decisions — such as to vaccinate or not vaccinate — with lingering uncertainty about whether they were right. When given a choice, some say yes to some vaccines and no to others. These parents are not zealots, they are decision makers navigating the grey, acting under conditions of uncertainty in perpetual flux.

    And among those uncertainties are the known and unknown side effects that each vaccine carries. Contrary to the suggestion — generally implicit — that vaccines are risk free (and therefore why would anyone ever resist official recommendations), the reality is that officially sanctioned written medical information on vaccines is — just like drugs — filled with information about common, uncommon, and unconfirmed but possible harms.

    Although MMR and autism have dominated journalistic coverage of this issue, and journalists have correctly characterised the scientific consensus that rejects any such link, most journalists have insufficiently acknowledged the fact that bodies such as the Institute of Medicine have “found convincing evidence of health outcomes —including seizures, inflammation of the brain, and fainting — that can be caused by certain vaccines, although these outcomes occur rarely.” And for 135 other adverse events investigated, the committee concluded “the evidence was inadequate to accept or reject a causal relationship” with vaccines.

    Medical journalists have an obligation to the truth. But journalists must also ensure that patients come first, which means a fresh approach to covering vaccines. It’s time to listen — seriously and respectfully — to patients’ concerns, not demonise them.”

    Peter Doshi associate editor, The BMJ
    BMJ 2017;356:j661 doi: 10.1136/bmj.j661 (Published 2017 February 07)

  45. I am surprised that the Echo ran such a story. It is something that mainstream media prints to stir the pot, divide us and create hate between people who choose to vaccinate and choose not to vaccinate, divide and conquer. I also think its sad and disrespectful to the parents with vaccine damaged children, the parents that know that their child was damaged by vaccines.

    I am ashamed that our government has gone down the road of blackmail regarding vaccines, punishing parents financially if they choose not to vaccinate. I believe in free choice and I thought we lived in a free country.

    If you look beyond the mainstream, beyond the studies paid for by the pharmaceutical companies there is a lot of concerning factual information about the risks of vaccines. You just have to read a full vaccine insert to see that there are risks. In the USA alone they have paid out close to 3 billion dollars of compensation to vaccine damaged children.

    The HPV vaccine has gained a lot of attention around the world as being one of the vaccines with the highest side effects. Sacrificial Virgins is a 3 part documentary that was awarded for its investigative journalism and sadly is a definite eye opener to the risks of vaccines. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KAzcMHaBvLs

    I dislike the terms pro vax and anti vax, we are all just parents who are choosing to protect our children that we love so much. We just need to respect each others decision and move on. So please go ahead make your own choice for your child but not for someone else’s child. What you have to understand is that the people that choose not to vaccinate feel very strongly about their choice, just like the people who choose to vaccinate. So can’t we please just agree to disagree.

    Finally if vaccinating is the best choice for all children please tell me why they have not done a study that compares life long health of vaccinated children against the health of non-vaccinated children. I am sure that would settle the argument….

  46. if you are in the decision process about vaccination visit this site. ahrp. org
    And then maybe you will understand why so many intelligent people who have the ability to think for themselves can see the ‘real’ risks in vaccines.

    And how Dr Wakefield was shafted by, would you believe it, a Murdock journalist.

    Meanwhile Autism is on the rise in Japan when vaccination was reintroduced after a temporary break.

    The method used to disprove causality (that MMR vaccine causes Autism Spectrum Disorder) cannot in fact disprove it at all.
    But heh don’t take my word for it ….ahp,org… go there see for your self.

    Having read the report I am really angry. Vindicated sure but I wish I was wrong, Many infants are going to suffer all their lives from this horrific avaricious behaviour of a few. Sadly for those not yet vaccinated it may be a while before justice prevails and the corporations are held accountable.

    Heres an interesting fact… in 25 years 4 children have died from measles in the UK… not the 270 that pro-faxes claimed.

    You’ll notice that they actually admit that there is a possibility of harmful side effects to these vaccines.

  47. This is the best debate I have witnessed in the Echo for ages.

    Mandy you have penetrated the Mullumbimby Tribe!! You have thrown a lit torch into the sleeping bear cave, now the tribe is awake!! The last bastion of non conformity have gone to the bunker and are arming up with articles and tribal support.

    I could really send this up, as you tend to do. but this is sadly serious.

    The sad part is there is a need to stay in line for fear of losing the support of the tribe and therefore the need to think for oneself is a ticket to being cast out and or ostracised.

    The fact people have the right to immunise or not is never in question.
    what is in question is why should the children not immunised be able to put others at risk in main society.

    Watching a child with Hooping Cough or Meningitis is like watching a car crash victim waiting for help knowing they weren’t the one driving on the wrong side of the road, they are just the victim of an others choice.

    • Your last paragraph got me Wally.
      As a lifelong health conscious person who doesn’t have any alcohol or drug prescribed or otherwise habits.
      I can really relate to being the victim of others choices.

      My tax bill for instance includes medicare. I don’t have any medical bills. So why should I pay for your or anyone else’s choice to eat rubbish, drink to excess, and not exercise.
      Sorry that may confuse those who don’t believe that food has anything to do with their health… and that in itself is possibly where the problem lies.
      Their refusal to be responsible citizens and take responsibility for their health is costing those who do.

      In the same way we see this ‘disease’ of irresponsibility here. With the end results manifested in our extremely unhealthy population. Obesity is out of control cancer is rampant, diabetes, dementia, auto immune disease the list is endless.
      Sadly no-one seems to notice that those of us that actually do take personal responsibility for our health by thinking about what we put into our bodies and avoiding putting into our bodies; don’t have a disease chronic or otherwise.
      And yes it is because we have a stronger immune system and that is because we don’t abuse it by not living a toxic lifestyle.

      Some figures indicate that around half of all hospital admissions are alcohol related. Who pays for that???
      I could write for ages about the pathetic behaviour of our citizens who clearly have no regard for others when they poison themselves with their toxic choices.

      Sorry to offend but this really hurts me to see the slow demise of our once healthy people slowly killing themselves by their own hands or mouths rather.

  48. I still can’t find anyone who is vax damaged – I think they are all hanging out with Yowies and Tassie Tigers – I’m still looking…

  49. Dear Mandy,

    Where does your GP get any information at all if not from the internet? Where do your children go for researching school projects or uni assignments if not the internet?

    It is ignorant and plain silly to say, “The internet is many things…but one thing it’s not is a source of is definitive, regulated and rigorously tested information on public health.”

    You really need to do more research on the vexatious issue of vaccination. May I suggest the internet.

    PS. Perhaps a good editing app would also help. There are many available on the internet.


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