Backlash: How the vaccine pushers turned true believers into vaccine sceptics - Part 3
How did we get to the point where anyone who asks even the most commonplace question about vaccines is reflexively reviled and dismissed as an "antivaxxer"?
In Part 1 of this series, I explored the ways that researchers aligned with the vaccine-industrial complex frame “vaccine hesitancy” amongst the public.
Part 2 delved into the full-spectrum warfare that is launched on any clinician or researcher who uncovers data that contradict the dogma that all vaccines that gain regulatory approval are “safe and effective”.
But how did we get to the point where anyone who asks even the most commonplace question about vaccines is reflexively reviled as an “antivaxxer”, a pejorative which permits instant dismissal of any consideration of their question? How did vaccines become such a sacred cow?
The Church of Modern Medicine
When I was in my early twenties, I read Confessions of a Medical Heretic by Dr Robert Mendelsohn. Mendelsohn’s conceptualisation of the Church of Modern Medicine, with its priests (doctors), temples (hospitals), rituals (such as useless and possibly harmful annual check-ups), sacraments (pills, procedures and injections) and, of course, heresies (such as rejecting the sacraments of Modern Medicine in preference for other ways of understanding health and disease), resonated strongly with me.
This framing helped me make sense of much of the strange behaviour I had already witnessed in close family members. Why would intelligent and competent adults who routinely invested considerable time and effort in researching which toaster to buy, or which tradesman to hire to renovate their bathroom, simply do anything their doctor said without question? Because they believed in their doctor. As Mendelsohn wrote,
“Modern Medicine can’t survive without our faith, because Modern Medicine is neither an art nor a science. It’s a religion.
One definition of religion identifies it as any organized effort to deal with puzzling or mysterious things we see going on in and around us. The Church of Modern Medicine deals with the most puzzling phenomena: birth, death, and all the tricks our bodies play on us—and we on them—in between. In The Golden Bough, religion is defined as the attempt to gain the favor of ‘powers superior to man, which are believed to direct and control the course of nature and of human life.'”
Confessions of a Medical Heretic, p. xiii
But Mendelsohn’s metaphor of Western medicine as a religion didn’t fully explain how vaccines, in particular, had become sacrosanct to researchers and policy-makers.
It’s relatively easy to put one over on the public, most of whom have precious little knowledge of even their most basic bodily functions (which I consider to be a major failing of our schooling system), let alone the complexities of individual and herd immunity and how mass vaccination programs have interfered with both.
And it’s easy to dupe doctors too, since they receive only the most rudimentary ‘education’ – if you can even call it that – on vaccines, as was acknowledged by Vaccine Confidence Project director Heidi Larson in her presentation to the World Health Organisation’s Global Vaccine Safety Summit on 3 December 2019:
“In medical school you’re lucky if you have a half day on vaccines, never mind keeping up to date with all this.”
But it should be harder to sucker scientists. After all, science is supposed to be defined by scepticism – the relentless questioning of everything, even (and perhaps especially) those things that “everybody knows” are true. The scientist is meant to take nothing on faith, to demand evidence for every assertion, to assiduously search for and then determinedly point out facts that contradict every hypothesis, and to be prepared to abandon even the most well-established theory if sufficient evidence accumulates against it.
At least, that’s what we’re told that scientists do. The reality is very different.
The vaccine-industrial complex
In his farewell address before handing over the office of President of the United States to John F. Kennedy, Dwight D. Eisenhower warned of the dangers to liberty and democracy posed by the multi-headed hydra that he described as “the military-industrial complex”.
Eisenhower coined this term to refer to the incestuous relationship between the military, the defence contractors who supply it, and the congresscritters who benefit from the flows of money between the two by receiving campaign financing, insider information and the promise of lucrative consulting gigs after they leave office, in return for approving military spending.
As you read these words (or listen to them, starting at 8 minutes 40 seconds in) spoken by the five-star general who founded the Psychological Warfare Branch of the Allied forces during World War II, notice how they apply equally to the pharmaceutical-industrial complex, and most particularly, the vaccine-industrial complex.
“In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.
We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.
Akin to, and largely responsible for the sweeping changes in our industrial-military posture, has been the technological revolution during recent decades.
In this revolution, research has become central; it also becomes more formalized, complex, and costly. A steadily increasing share is conducted for, by, or at the direction of, the Federal government.
Today, the solitary inventor, tinkering in his shop, has been over shadowed by task forces of scientists in laboratories and testing fields. In the same fashion, the free university, historically the fountainhead of free ideas and scientific discovery, has experienced a revolution in the conduct of research. Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity. For every old blackboard there are now hundreds of new electronic computers.
The prospect of domination of the nation’s scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present and is gravely to be regarded.
Yet, in holding scientific research and discovery in respect, as we should, we must also be alert to the equal and opposite danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific-technological elite.”
Now, ask yourself, has there been “unwarranted influence” from the vaccine-industrial complex in public policy? Yes, without a doubt. The supernova-scale expansion of the childhood vaccination schedule in my lifetime, and the tying of vaccination status to access to government benefits and preschool education, was not driven by any genuine threat to public health posed by infectious diseases. These had ceased to be a significant contributor to serious illness and death in children (and indeed in the whole population) long before vaccines were widely employed:
Has “the weight of this combination endanger[ed] our liberties or democratic processes”? Hell, yes. Anyone who has lost their job, or been barred from visiting their loved one in a nursing home or hospital, or travelling, or dining in a restaurant, or going to the cinema – and all without any public consultative process being followed – because they didn’t accept a COVID-19 injection can attest to this.
Has the enterprise of science become dominated by government-funded (that is, taxpayer-funded) research and contracts? Self-evidently so. The development of expensive, patented COVID-19 injections that have reaped record profits for their liability-free manufacturers was bankrolled by government funding:
“Out of $5.9 billion in investment [in COVID-19 injection research and development] tracked up to March 2021, 98.12% was public funding. The money primarily went to private companies with both Moderna and Janssen receiving more than $900 million. Pfizer and BioNTech, who developed the first Covid-19 vaccine authorized in the United States, received some $800 million in R&D funding. Practically all of the money invested in the three companies came from public funding.”
Meanwhile, promising treatments including nutraceuticals and repurposed, out-of-patent drugs were left to wither on the vine, with trials funded only by outsiders to the pharmaceutical-industrial complex.
Finally, has “public policy… itself become the captive of a scientific-technological elite”? Again, the answer is unquestionably yes. So-called “public servants” who have assumed dictatorial powers since the inception of the manufactured COVID crisis, have repeatedly refused to release the data on which their draconian restrictions were supposedly based, for the scrutiny of the public that pays their salaries. US Chief Medical Adviser for COVID Response, Anthony Fauci, has asserted that he “represents science” and hence that anyone who questions his pronouncements is mounting an “attack” on him which constitutes an “attack on science“. College drop-out and convicted antitrust violator Bill Gates decreed that the only way “the world will be able to go back to the way things were in December before the coronavirus pandemic… is… when we have an almost perfect drug to treat COVID-19, or when almost every person on the planet has been vaccinated against coronavirus.”
This self-appointed “scientific-technological elite” feels no obligation to justify its actions to the public, let alone consult them on the policies they inflict upon them. You and I are supposed to just sit down, shut up, and do as we’re told by “the experts”. This is, of course, the complete antithesis of the scientific method.
It stands to reason that those at the top of the scientific totem pole, who have proved themselves useful foot soldiers to the captains of industry, should be the most vocal supporters of policies that privilege corporate profits over public good. But why don’t we hear more dissenting voices from among the rank and file?
From scientist to salesperson
As Bret Weinstein has pointed out, the application of the scientific method requires a steadfast commitment to attempting to disconfirm your own hypothesis – even, and especially, if you desperately want to prove that it’s correct.
However, the system by which scientific work is funded requires scientists to effectively become salespeople for their hypotheses in order to win grants, which prevents them from thinking and functioning as scientists (listen below, or start watching at 19 minutes, 10 seconds in):
Furthermore, peer review – developed as a quality control assurance mechanism to ensure poorly-conducted or fraudulent science doesn’t get published – was revealed by the Climategate scandal to have devolved into a system for suppressing any voices of dissent from the dominant paradigm.
And, counterintuitively, the more scientific papers are published in a particular field, the less innovative and more conformist the scientists working within it become. As a paper titled ‘Slowed canonical progress in large fields of science’
“A deluge of papers does not lead to turnover of central ideas in a field, but rather to ossification of canon…
A novel idea that does not fit within extant schemas will be less likely to be published, read, or cited. Faced with this dynamic, authors are pushed to frame their work firmly in relationship to well-known papers, which serve as ‘intellectual badges’ (19) identifying how the new work is to be understood, and discouraged from working on too-novel ideas that cannot be easily related to existing canon.”
For an incisive but concise analysis of the impact of this “ossification of canon” on the manufactured COVID crisis, read Eugyppius’ superb article:
To summarise, Western medicine has taken on cult-like qualities in order to fill the religion-shaped hole left by secularisation, the vaccine-industrial complex has co-opted “public health” policy which now serves its own interests rather than those of the public, and science has devolved into “a factory, not of free inquiry, but of conformity”.
What can we do to fix this mess? Fortunately, some of the work is inadvertently being done for us, by the vaccine-industrial complex itself.
In the study on the suppression of scientific discourse on vaccine safety which I referenced in Part 2, respondents referred to one more consequence of the relentless attacks on their academic freedom and medical ethics, which the authors dubbed a “backfire effect” or “censorship boomerang”, defining this as “a counter-reaction that draws more attention to the opponents’ position”.
They go on to point out that
“In the field of vaccination, signs of a boomerang effect can be found in the growing number of groups expressing dissenting views on vaccines on social networks such as Facebook and Twitter… Studies examining the growing global phenomenon of ‘vaccine hesitancy’ usually link it with the activities of such ‘anti-vaxx’ groups.”
Why would vilifying scientists and clinicians who speak up about vaccine harms cause more people to be curious about what they have to say? Because, contrary to what the “scientific-technological elite” would have you believe, the average person isn’t stupid. He or she understands intuitively that when an immensely powerful force exerts considerable time, money and effort to utterly crush a powerless lone doctor or scientist, it embodies George R. R. Martin’s pithy saw, “When you tear out a man’s tongue, you are not proving him a liar, you’re only telling the world that you fear what he might say”.
Or, to put it in more sober academic-speak,
“Suppression of critical voices in science violates scientific principles, prevents a substantive discussion in a controversial field, and may establish a pattern of unfair conduct that diminishes public confidence in science and medicine.”
And of course, scientists who wander naively into the vaccine-industrial complex buzzsaw may, if they have sufficient courage and integrity, be provoked to dig deeper and share what they learn about the nature of the beast that has tried to swallow them whole, with the public.
Gary Goldman (whom we met in Part 2) was a computer scientist and inventor (he developed the first microcomputer-based computer aided drafting [CAD] system) who probably never would have given vaccines a second thought, if the CDC hadn’t hired him to analyse the impact of the chickenpox vaccine, and then engaged in a protracted harassment campaign to attempt to prevent him from publishing the harms that he had discovered. Goldman went on to become a health advocate and found a journal, Medical Veritas, devoted to promoting increased awareness of vaccine adverse reactions, depoliticising public health, and retooling the current Big Pharma-dominated disease-treatment system into a true health-care system. Nice work, CDC.
An end to faith-based medicine?
While we can all draw inspiration from beacons of integrity like Gary Goldman, at the end of the day we have to recognise that no one is coming to prise us from the tentacles of the self-appointed “scientific-technological elite” that Eisenhower foresaw. It’s up to us to opt out of the control system that they wish to impose on us – for our own good, of course – by taking responsibility for ourselves in every sphere of life in which we’re being shunted into passive dependency on the structures and institutions that they have created.
Taking responsibility for our own health – through eating a wholefood plant-centric diet, daily physical activity, prioritising sleep and rest, cultivating meaningful social connections and centering our lives around purpose and service – is an obvious first step.
As Robert Mendelsohn wrote back in 1979,
“Modern Medicine relies on faith to survive. All religions do. So heavily does the Church of Modern Medicine rely on faith that if everyone somehow simply forgot to believe in it for just one day, the whole system would collapse. For how else could any institution get people to do the things Modern Medicine gets people to do, without inducing a profound suspension of doubt? Would people allow themselves to be artificially put to sleep and then cut to pieces in a process they couldn’t have the slightest notion about—if they didn’t have faith? Would people swallow the thousands of tons of pills every year—again without the slightest knowledge of what these chemicals are going to do—if they didn’t have faith?”
Confessions of a Medical Heretic, p. xiv
And, I would add, would people allow themselves and their children to be injected with novel substances that have no long-term safety data, if they didn’t have faith?
If you want to place your faith in anything, have faith in the self-healing capacity of your own body. There’s a role for medicine, of course, in limited circumstances such as physical trauma, acute heart conditions and serious infections. But for the vast majority of ailments for which people seek medical advice, the bon mot attributed (probably incorrectly) to Voltaire rings true:
“The art of medicine consists in amusing the patient while nature cures the disease.”
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