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Bill Gates Says Anti-Vaccine Effort Kills Children

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the won't-somebody-think-of-the-oh-wait dept.

Medicine 832

Hugh Pickens writes writes "CNN has an interesting interview with Bill Gates who says that unbelievable progress is being made in both inventing new vaccines and making sure they get out to all the children who need them. The improvements could cut the number of children who die every year from about 9 million to half that. But Gates has harsh words for those who engage in anti-vaccine efforts, especially Dr. Andrew Wakefield, who falsified data to 'prove' a fraudulent link between vaccines and autism. 'It's an absolute lie that has killed thousands of kids,' says Gates. 'Because the mothers who heard that lie, many of them didn't have their kids take either pertussis or measles vaccine, and their children are dead today.'"

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832 comments

Wow (5, Insightful)

DFENS619 (1008187) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114448)

Someone mod Bill +1 hero so he gets out of the troll area

Re:Wow (5, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114634)

Even if it were true (vaccines cause autism), as Penn & Teller wisely argued: Vaccines SAVE more lives than they kill/damage.

See the video for yourself - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RfdZTZQvuCo [youtube.com]

Re:Wow (5, Informative)

adamofgreyskull (640712) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114888)

I prefer this one: Penn Point [youtube.com] .
Specifically about Asshole Andrew Wakefield's ("who used to be a doctor but is now just a guy") fraudulent falsification of results in order to line his own pockets with money from a firm of lawyers who wanted to sue pharmaceutical companies.

Even if vaccinations DID cause autism, which they don't and there's no proof and this Wakefield's study has been *completely* discredited (it's complete bullshit) but even if it DID cause autism, which it DOESN'T! and let's make this clear, it DOES NOT cause autism, it DOESN'T! It does NOT cause autism. But even if it did, which it doesn't, even if it did, which it doesn't, even if it did, which it doesn't. It doesn't. It DOES NOT. It would STILL be worth it to give vaccinations

Re:Wow (5, Insightful)

sortius_nod (1080919) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114658)

I must agree with him, and I didn't realise how bad this was in the US until I saw a documentary the other night on the "war against vaccination" in the US. Pretty much the people against vaccination keep changing the reasoning why the vaccinations are "bad".

One minute it's the MMR vaccines that cause autism, then it's the mercury based preservatives, then it's the amount of shots kids get, blah blah blah. Basically all the reasons have been refuted by scientific studies (Denmark was used quite often as they keep medical records on all their citizens).

One of the anti-vaccine idiots even had the balls to say that it was up to the scientific community to disprove that vaccines are dangerous.

Jim Carey and that other bitch both need to be hurt with hot pokers. The simple fact that autism becomes apparent at the time when kids get their vaccinations does not mean that the vaccinations cause autism. In fact, the studies showed that vaccinated kids had the same rate of autism as non-vaccinated kids.

Pseudo-science will always win because the media outlets can get "passionate" famous people behind the campaigns.

Re:Wow (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114744)

The problem is worse than that. Just look at the number of famous, retarded actors who became scientologists.

Re:Wow (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114792)

Changing excuses in the war on vaccines? Sounds a lot like the war on foreskins the US has waged for over a century. Thankfully, those nuts have started to lose traction. It's amazing how irrational people in this country are.

Re:Wow (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114820)

Show us figures on what percentage of children in outbreaks of measles, for example, have been 'vaccinated'.

Strangely enough, we never get to see those figures. The media never tells us.

Here is just one example:

http://www.thisissouthwales.co.uk/news/Measles-rise-putting-3-000-pupils-risk/article-1004630-detail/article.html

LOL at the comments:
"These selfish parents should be stopped from all education entitlements for their children, until they can show all MMR immunisations have been carried out. It happens in other Countries."

Why is the commenter worried? If his children have been 'vaccinated', then how can they catch measles?

Notice there is no mention of what percentage of those who caught the measles were vaccinated! Surely it should be NONE of them, and the pro vaccination fraudsters should be shouting that fact from the rooftop?

Hmmm....

Here's another one:

http://www.newswales.co.uk/?section=Health&F=1&id=15361

No mention of what percentage of those who caught measles were 'vaccinated'....

I can't imagine why. (rolls eyes)

http://www.whale.to/v/hadwen1.html

Why hasn't that speech ever been rebutted? Is it 'too easy' or some other such pathetic excuse?

And here we have the proof from the horse's mouth:

http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/00000359.htm

Funny how that 'scientist' Jenner never spoke of the need for 'booster' 'vaccinations', isn't it... what with him having invented this pile of cow pus...

If you actually study the HISTORY of so-called 'vaccination', and read Dr.Hadwen's speeches, you'll see the REAL reason for its introduction (money, huge amounts of it), and the real reason for the great reductions in some of the diseases they 'vaccinated' against - huge improvements in SANITATION.

How I laugh at all the holier than thou idiots on Slashdot, who really don't want to look at things objectively at all. You lap up whatever the shills in the media tell you, then lambast anybody intelligent enough to question it...

Re:Wow (3, Insightful)

mibe (1778804) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114880)

Dude, vaccines aren't 100%. Not everyone who gets a shot is immune to the disease. For some diseases it's more variable than others (see: BCG vaccine for TB), and it's not always clear why, although HLA haplotypes have been put forward as a potential explanation. That pretty much counters every one of your arguments. So keep that in mind whenever you go to write another anti-vaccination rant and think first, "Hey, if vaccines - like virtually everything else in medicine - aren't 100% effective, how does this affect what I'm planning to say?"

Re:Wow (1)

Ganthor (1693614) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114864)

I think I saw that one too.

One comment I thought was worth reflecting on was that vaccines have actually been quite successful in eliminating these illnesses from the community. So much so that people have now forgotten what these diseases are like and now focussing on the much smaller rate of (alleged) complications.

Re:Wow (5, Insightful)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114740)

Bill's charitable work is actually quite awesome. Among other things, his foundation is very good at making sure that their funding goes to projects that actually work (surprisingly unusual in the non-profit world).

Now, I don't approve of how he made his money, but I do approve of him using his money to help people rather than just hang out and be rich with Warren Buffett all day.

Hell has, indeed, frozen over. (5, Funny)

the saltydog (450856) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114452)

I actually *agree* with Bill Gates on something.

I'm scared - hold me...

Re:Hell has, indeed, frozen over. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114504)

I actually *agree* with Bill Gates on something.

I'm scared - hold me...

me too, he is right

Re:Hell has, indeed, frozen over. (1, Insightful)

billgates (75865) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114772)

This is an historic day. It is the first time I ever agreed with Bill Gates about anything.

He's right (5, Interesting)

quixote9 (999874) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114468)

It's good that most children escaped the consequences of Wakefield's BS because enough were vaccinated to make it pretty hard for disease to spread. But the numbers are there showing that there were hundreds of excess deaths and life-changing disabilities, such as blindness or retardation, from kids not getting measles vaccines.

Re:He's right (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114556)

These damaged children should be able to hold their parents criminally liable.

Re:He's right (-1, Troll)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114708)

>>>hold their parents criminally liable.

Disagree.
Why?
Because then you open-up parents to all kinds of liabilities: You spanked your child? 5 years jail. You decided Government schools were crap, and homeschooled instead? How dare you! 10 years jail.

"What do you mean you let your kid run-around naked, because your family believes nudism is healthy? OMG the trauma you filthy hippy heathen!!!" 20 years. "You LET your daughter date a black boy? Now you've tainted her for life. You've ruined her." Hanging.

Never, never, never should society be able to dictate how parents should behave. Else becoming a parent means you become a Slave to the society at large, and can be sued for the most ridiculous things. And don't say it can't happen, because it's happened before (especially the whole white/black and nudism issue).

Re:He's right (2)

ChrisMP1 (1130781) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114844)

Oh come on. How do you go from "criminally liable for not vaccinating kids" to "death penalty for allowing cross-racial dating"? It's a slippery slope, but it's not frictionless...

I can go the other way, too. You spanked your child? 5 years jail. You decided your child was bad, and beat him harshly? How dare you! What do you mean you sexually abused your child?

Oh wait. Those things are already illegal. And I doubt you're upset with that, either. Last I checked, it's the parents' job to protect the child too. Obviously there's a limit to that, but vaccines? How can you not hold the parent liable when the child dies due to the parents' gullibility?

Re:He's right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114846)

You spanked your child? 5 years jail.

Child abuse is already illegal, so there's no need for such a law. If you don't believe that it's abuse (or at least sexual harassment), try spanking or hitting some random person (perhaps a women for greater effect) when they do something that you do not approve of and claim that you were helping them by punishing them. There are much more effective means of parenting than abuse, and parents who resort to it are nothing but bad.

Oh, and: if a parents' actions hurt the well being of the child (I don't even know how any of your examples are related besides the spanking example) they should be punished. That includes purposefully depriving children of much needed medicine or vaccines. It simply isn't the same as proposing artificial and/or racist restrictions upon parents.

Re:He's right (2)

goodmanj (234846) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114736)

They probably could sue their parents, I'd rule in their favor if I was on the jury. But one of the things about parenthood is it gives you a unique power to brainwash your kid. Anti-vacc parents will have anti-vacc children, for the most part, making a lawsuit unlikely.

Re:He's right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114750)

For what? Following scientific advice? It's not their fault the "scientist" in question was a fraudster. The kids should sue him but I don't suppose spreading all his wealth across all the people he's harmed would make much difference to anyone.

Re:He's right (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114574)

Personally I'm glad mr. Bill Gates goes after polio rather than autism - and I'm speaking as the father of a son who has autism. Now, Polio was proven to be a lifelong, disabling, life-shattering disability. Whereas Wakefield *argues* that autism *may be* caused by the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine which obviously is supposed to protect against lesser diseases. In all fairness, I still haven't made up my mind about Wakefield's claims; extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof, yet his claims match the way my boy regressed. Everything else being equal, I'd rather Bill spends his billions on eliminating polio than fighting against the MMR vaccine. Not that it takes away my worries about my other child... I'd love to see definite proof of Wakefield being yet another pseudo-scientist (or not!). As of yet he sounds quite convincing, or at least like he's not talking 100% bull. (That's the problem, isn't it?)
Help!

Re:He's right (5, Informative)

mibe (1778804) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114716)

http://www.bmj.com/content/342/bmj.c5347.full

http://download.thelancet.com/flatcontentassets/pdfs/S0140673610601754.pdf

Wakefield has been widely discredited for quite some time. His results have never been duplicated, studies have failed to demonstrate a link between vaccines and autism, and the scapegoat additive thiomersal (or thimerosal) was taken out of vaccines in 2001 to no effect.

Wakefield's not even a doctor anymore... (5, Informative)

adam (1231) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114776)

I'm sorry to hear your child has autism — I can only imagine the difficulty of coping with something so generalized and poorly understood by modern science. You are also right: extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof; Wakefield has none. He's been stripped of his license. His paper has been retracted. And now it's come out that it was more than lacking in proof, it was a "deliberate fraud," to quote to editor of the BMJ (Dr. Godlee).

Of the 12 children in his study, children who supposedly developed entercolitis and then regressive autism after the MMR vaccination, only one of the 12 had regressive autism. Three didn't have autism at all. Five had developmental problems noted in their records before their MMR vaccine. The development of problems wasn't nearly as sudden as claimed (often months elapsed). Nine of the children's bowel tests were reported as "non-specific colitis" despite testing normal. Many of the children were recruited from lawyers who were hoping to sue the vaccine makers (can we say 'confirmation bias'?).

Most of these latter revelations have just come to light [telegraph.co.uk] . I can only imagine how hard it must be to be in your position, to want to find an answer for causation. Especially if your child did have entercolitis and then regressive autism. But you should be aware that there isn't a shred of evidence to support this claim. Not a shred.

Also, Dr. Gupta is bordering on irresponsibility (imo) when he says to Gates, "There has been a lot of news about is there a connection with autism, for example. What do you make of all that? Dr. [Andrew] Wakefield wrote a paper about this [in The Lancet in 1998] saying he thought there was a connection." He may be a journalist, but he is a doctor first, and he could have formed his question in a way that more clearly stated what he surely knows to be facts (that Wakefield isn't licensed anymore, that the paper has been retracted and proven to be fraudulent). It's this sort of undue politeness in dancing around the truth that leave doubts in the minds of parents like yourself.

I've seen children dying of measles (in Kaduna State, northern Nigeria), and it's a terrible thing to have to see. In the case of Nigeria, it's a rumor about infertility drugs concealed in vaccines that led to a lot of resistance-to-consent amongst certain communities, and there too the damage of such a provably fraudulent statement has been a long time in undoing. I know it's tempting, maybe even easier to just believe whatever some conspiracy theorist says, but it's important to trust in the thousands of scientists who are advancing the science of saving lives, rather than the few psuedo-scientists who are trying to advance their own notoriety and financial positions.

Re:He's right (2)

goodmanj (234846) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114814)

I'd love to see definite proof of Wakefield being yet another pseudo-scientist

It's not that he's a pseudoscientist: many pseudoscientists are sincere but misguided. Wakefield FABRICATED EVIDENCE to MAKE MONEY. But here's your proof: it's long, but as you say, extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof.

http://www.bmj.com/content/342/bmj.c5347.full [bmj.com]
http://www.bmj.com/content/342/bmj.c5258.full [bmj.com]

Re:He's right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114624)

But the numbers are there showing that there were hundreds of excess deaths and life-changing disabilities, such as blindness or retardation, from kids not getting measles vaccines.

If that's the case, then there should be at least one set of parents that will publicly stand up to Wakefield, et al. and state that "we trusted you".

I'll suggest that this group is ever growing and that this scenario is inevitable.

Naturally. (2)

Kingrames (858416) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114480)

This just in: people who make knee-jerk reactions out of fear make horrible mistakes.

Everyone, let's take note of that so we don't make that mistake a ridiculous number of times every day for like ten years. Because that would totally suck.
Now, let's all mod me up +1 Funny, for a little while, then really really sad.

Re:Naturally. (2)

Eskarel (565631) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114562)

The problem with this is that it's not a knee jerk response. What it is is something worse, it's bullshit science which has been deliberately prepared to generate a particular result, a result which has caused deaths. I always thought it was bullshit, but it's totally understandable for parents to believe it. There was "scientific" proof. Personally I think Wakefield ought to be charged with murder for every one of those. Junk science is a huge threat in this world.

Re:Naturally. (1)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114656)

Garbage in, garbage out, right, even in realms other than science. How many thousands have died needlessly because of the knee jerk reactions to falsified claims of Iraq's connection to the 9/11 attacks, acquisition of yellow cake uranium and the existence of other WMD (e.g. chemical weapons)?

Re:Naturally. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114810)

How many thousands have died needlessly because of the knee jerk reactions to falsified claims of Iraq's connection to the 9/11 attacks, acquisition of yellow cake uranium and the existence of other WMD (e.g. chemical weapons)?

None. That war would have happened anyway. If anything, that falsified intelligence brought more countries into the coalition, resulting in a swifter and more successful campaign and so probably saved lives.

Smoking seriously harms you and others around you (2)

tuxish (1022783) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114500)

Not having your children vaccinated not only leaves your child open to disease, but then they can pass the disease onto others. Not vaccinating seriously harms you and others around you. Therefore, not vaccinating is equivalent to giving your child ciggarettes. QED.

Re:Smoking seriously harms you and others around y (0, Troll)

RoFLKOPTr (1294290) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114676)

Not having your children vaccinated not only leaves your child open to disease, but then they can pass the disease onto others. Not vaccinating seriously harms you and others around you. Therefore, not vaccinating is equivalent to giving your child ciggarettes. QED.

Except smoking doesn't seriously harm others around you and the people that came up with that crock are no better than Dr Wakefield.

Re:Smoking seriously harms you and others around y (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114728)

Except smoking doesn't seriously harm others around you and the people that came up with that crock are no better than Dr Wakefield.

Citation needed.
Oh, right - you don't have one. Because we all know that second hand smoke is indeed bad. Heck, back when smoking in places like bowling alleys and bars (California) was legal I had to stop going to those places (and I liked Casino bowling on Saturday nights) because of the smoke. See, I have allergies and would lose my voice and get really red and itchy eyes. You can call that "not serious" but I would disagree. There is, of course, lots of evidence FOR second hand smoke being a problem. Where's your evidence against it?

Re:Smoking seriously harms you and others around y (1)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114788)

I didn't have any of those problems, and I still stopped going, especially the bowling, which I was really good at (205 average when I quit). The debate over actual health issues don't even enter into it for me. Coming home smelling like a factory was enough. It's a fucking filthy habit. I always wanted to go over to the smokers and take a pee in their area. If they complained, I'd say, "But it's sterile! It's no threat to you!"

Never did Casino bowling. Is that the one with the randomly placed colored pins?

Re:Smoking seriously harms you and others around y (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114828)

Smoking is disgusting and yes smoke can cause irritation when you're exposed to heavily-polluted air, but you're not going to get cancer from inhaling it.

Re:Smoking seriously harms you and others around y (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114842)

Second hand smoke in the form of someone you live with and are around constantly, yes, I can see that causing problems. Second hand smoke from being around people at a club, bar, party, bowling alley, no. I live in California and the daily pollution caused by industry and cars are far worse than catching a whiff of someones's smoke a couple hours a week at the bar.

Allergies are a completely different thing because you could be allergic to basically anything. That's your own flaw.

Microsoft and vaccines (5, Funny)

jbeaupre (752124) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114506)

If you think about it, the way you develop a vaccine is to:
Embrace : copy the original
Extend : modify that version
Extinguish : wipe out the original

Bill Gates is right at home.

Re:Microsoft and vaccines (5, Insightful)

AndrewNeo (979708) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114594)

Hey, go with what you know. Getting to use it to save lives, all the better.

The planet does not need more humans, Bill. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114512)

You can stop your humanitarian cause now. The more you work for it, the more the current residents of the planet will suffer.

Re:The planet does not need more humans, Bill. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114540)

fuck you sir.

Re:The planet does not need more humans, Bill. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114598)

Since you are so concerned about it, you can help. Don't get yourself or your children vaccinated or treated for any illnesses. That could kill off at least a few wastes of life.

Why would some people think that ? (-1, Troll)

bonekeeper (1294622) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114524)

That's because his Gates Foundation advocates the use of vaccines and birth control as means of population control. I have nothing against advocating birth control, but it's hard to take the advice of Mr. Gates seriously when it comes to safety of vaccines when he thinks vaccines should be used for population control. Just Google "bill gates vaccination population" and you'll find several pointers on this. To quote Gates' TED talk: "First we got population. The world today has 6.8 billion people and that's headed up to about 9 billion. Now, if we do a really great job on *new vaccines*, *health care*, reproductive health services, we could lower that by perhaps 15%." -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6WQtRI7A064&feature=player_embedded [youtube.com] So, how in the hell could better vaccines and better health care help lower the world population? They can't. Just bad vaccines and bad (or lack of) healthcare can do that, coupled with his "reproductive health services" which at this point sounds like sterilization. So yeah, if Mr. Gates hands me a vaccine, I don't think I'll be taking it (even though I don't have kids and don't plan to).

Re:Why would some people think that ? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114576)

Countries with high child mortality rates have a greater problem with overpopulation. That is, if you know half your kids will die of pertussis, you will have more kids. It is paradoxical, but preventing child mortality actually decreases overpopulation.

Re:Why would some people think that ? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114586)

The thing is, most anything that improves the quality of life tends to lower the birth rate. Correlation doesn't equal causation, whatever. But as people get richer, healthier, happier, they are less likely to have a dozen kids in the hopes that some survive.

Re:Why would some people think that ? (4, Insightful)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114596)

So, how in the hell could better vaccines and better health care help lower the world population? They can't.

Yes they can, and they do. As parents become more confident that their children will survive, they have fewer of them, and invest more resources in each child. Vaccines, good healthcare, good nutrition, and good education, all reduce population growth.

Re:Why would some people think that ? (3, Informative)

marked23 (693822) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114670)

>how in the hell could better vaccines and better health care help lower the world population?

Populations who have lower rates of disease, and better access to health care, tend to have smaller families because they don't have to have more kids as a hedge against their own death rate.

Smaller families becomes a snowball effect to more wealth, and even better access to healthcare.

Oh, and what's so bad about population control?

Re:Why would some people think that ? (4, Insightful)

TapeCutter (624760) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114690)

Sorry to interrupt your "Evil Bill's got a needle" rant but better health means people don't have ten kids in the hope that two will survive past the age of five. A "vaccine" substitute for the pill means you only need one shot a year rather than paying for pills once a month (assuming you can find a reliable source for the pills).

Reason for the hullabaloo wasn't as stated (-1)

BubbaJonBoy (691386) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114530)

The impetus to do more vaccine research is mostly due to limited liability for big pharma IMHO. There is no legal cash limit for drug liability but there are caps on vaccines. This from way back to promote acceptance. Wakefield was pursued to extremes because big pharma stood to lose their new cash cow.

Re:Reason for the hullabaloo wasn't as stated (5, Informative)

uglyduckling (103926) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114582)

Wakefield was not "pursued to extremes". He did research on children without ethical approval in the UK, which is an offence that leads to losing your medical license, and possibly criminal action too. He published research in a field for which he was not qualified, with falsified results. He was also running a company selling single vaccines (his research 'proved' problems for the combined vaccine) and was on the payroll of anti-vaccine lawyers whilst claiming to carry out independent research.

Re:Reason for the hullabaloo wasn't as stated (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114854)

"Wakefield was pursued to extremes because big pharma stood to lose their new cash cow."

Wakefield was pursued by ordinary scientists because his bullshit was dangerous, his fraudulent claims were motivated by money. If there were any justice in the world his dishonesty, greed and disregard for the health of others would land him behind bars.

"There is no legal cash limit for drug liability but there are caps on vaccines. This from way back to promote acceptance."

WTF, how does limiting liability "promote acceptance"? Do you routinely shun products with a guarantee in favour of a pig in a poke?

So... (1, Interesting)

Skidborg (1585365) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114536)

Correct me if I'm wrong, but if everybody get a chance to get vaccines, then the only people who are at risk because of not wanting vaccines are the people who have chosen it for themselves, correct? And if there aren't enough vaccines to go around, then just skip over the people who don't want them and give them to the people who do.

People still have the right to smoke and drink, even though those things are dangerous to their personal health and sometimes to the health of those around them. If you're going to enforce your positive world view on one subject on the people are around you, then you need to be consistent and protect them from all of the misinformed decisions they might make in their life.

Re:So... (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114564)

You're wrong. Vaccination relies on masses of people being vaccinated. Vaccines do not provide 100% protection. So even if you are vaccinated, if the guy sitting next to you in class is a bag of germs, you can still be infected. Vaccination greatly reduces the *probability* that you will be infected, but it does not *eliminate* it.

The anti-vaccine people have harmed many thousands of people, directly and indirectly.

Re:So... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114732)

Exactly. This is particularly true with regard to mumps. It hasn't really made the news because the outbreaks have all been very regional (mostly New York and South Florida), but over the past year or two, there have been *record* numbers of adults vaccinated against mumps as children who've nevertheless come down with it. The reason is that MMR vacine is about 95% effective in recently-vaccinated kids, and less than 60% effective in adults who had it more than 10 years ago -- if that. The only thing that keeps mumps under control is the fact that kids were traditionally its biggest vector. A kid would get infected, infect others at school, it would spread like wildfire, and those kids would go home and infect their entire families. Stir, rinse, and repeat. By eliminating its main vector (kids in school), the benefits cascade outward to everyone who comes into contact with them.

Re:So... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114862)

Oops:

vaccination against smallpox has now reached 100% efficiency.

MB

Re:So... (2)

artor3 (1344997) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114568)

The difference is that people aren't choosing not to be vaccinated themselves, they're choosing not to vaccinate their children. The state can't force you to eat healthy, but if you malnourish your children, they can be taken away. Put another way, you have the right to stupidly harm yourself. You do not have the right to stupidly harm others.

Re:So... (2)

YrWrstNtmr (564987) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114580)

Correct me if I'm wrong, but if everybody get a chance to get vaccines, then the only people who are at risk because of not wanting vaccines are the people who have chosen it for themselves, correct?

Kids don't generally get to make that choice to be at risk.

Re:So... (2)

imthesponge (621107) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114588)

Choosing not to vaccinate your child endangers other people's infants who are too young to receive the vaccine, along with people who have been vaccinated but for whom the protection has diminished over time.

Re:So... (1)

Mindcontrolled (1388007) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114592)

Not exactly correct. Vaccines do not give you 100% immunity, usually. Unvaccinated people increase the risk for everyone, because they are 100% not immune. Google the whole "herd immunity" concept.

Re:So... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114650)

Exactly why GB does not vaccinate against chicken pox. Google it.

Re:So... (5, Insightful)

uglyduckling (103926) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114600)

It's one thing for people to choose not to have vaccines, that is a right and it would be an assault on their person to force it upon them. It's another thing entirely for groups with an agenda to promote misinformation and falsified, unethically conducted research in order to try to influence people into refusing vaccines. The lives of the children that die from diseases that can be prevented by vaccination should be on their consciences.

Re:So... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114604)

This would be true if the vaccines were 100% effective. The only 100% effective way of not catching measles is to never be exposed in the first place. Putting out Petri dishes (unvaccinated children) for measles to grow in and spread places those who have been vaccinated at risk, just less risk than if they'd not had the vaccine.

Re:So... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114612)

Two and a half reasons why we vaccinated people should care:
    1) Herd Immunity -- some people can't get vaccinated at any particular time, but if most everyone else does then the disease can't get to them. Plus for a lot of us who got vaccinations a long time ago, we don't know for sure how good the immunity still is. This counts for a reason and a half.
      2) When some kid gets sick and goes to the hospital there is a good chance that the rest of us will be paying part of the bill, directly or indirectly.

Re:So... (1)

bcrowell (177657) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114628)

Correct me if I'm wrong, but if everybody get a chance to get vaccines, then the only people who are at risk because of not wanting vaccines are the people who have chosen it for themselves, correct? And if there aren't enough vaccines to go around, then just skip over the people who don't want them and give them to the people who do.

Two problems with your logic:

  • 1. The dead kids didn't make a choice. Their parents made a choice.
  • 2. herd immunity [wikipedia.org]

So the anti-vaccine parents aren't just making choices that hurt themselves, they're making choices that kill children, including other people's children.

Re:So... (3, Informative)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114644)

You are wrong. Vaccine immunity is a statistical thing rather than an absolute. A typical vaccine might fully immunize about 80% of the recipients of the vaccine. Others might have weaker immunity or none at all. This means by not immunizing you not only endanger yourself but the people who have had the vaccine and not obtained full immunity.

The immunity of the population is cumulative as function of the total number of people immunized and the efficacy of the vaccine.

This is why laws requiring everyone that doesn't have a compelling medical reason for getting the vaccination are justified.

Re:So... (1)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114648)

Correct me if I'm wrong,

You are wrong. Vaccines don't give 100% immunity. Even vaccinated people can contract the disease. The major benefit of vaccines is "herd immunity", where enough people are vaccinated that the disease cannot spread through the population. If enough people skip the vaccine, then the herd immunity breaks down and the disease spreads. It will disproportionately infect non-vaccinated people, but everyone is at some risk.

Re:So... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114662)

The baby has no understanding of these things. She has the right to live but not enough resources to make that decision for herself. Big difference compared to smokers and alcoholics. Most are adult and responsible for themselves and for people around them.

In short, no (1)

Cyberax (705495) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114696)

No, that's not correct. Quite a lot of vaccines have efficiencies less than 90%, so even vaccinated people can contract a disease.

However, it's not a problem if everyone is vaccinated because of "herd immunity". I.e. even if someone is infected, the disease won't be able to spread through the population.

The level of vaccinations required to achieve the herd immunity greatly varies by disease. For polio it's about 85%. And for influenza it's not even possible (required level of vaccination is >100%) with the current vaccines.

Re:So... (1)

Draek (916851) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114780)

People still have the right to smoke and drink, while the rest of us still have the right to tell them they're absolute morons for doing so. Bill Gates is essentially doing the same here, he's not asking for government intervention in dealing with these idiots, he's merely reminding them of their idiot status to the rest of the world.

Re:So... (1)

bloodhawk (813939) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114850)

Certain vaccines can only be given to people at certain ages as they can be dangerous to give to babies. So no they are not just placing themselves at risk, they are risking the lives of every infant their child comes anywhere near (you don't even need physical contact to pass on measles). This is the real problem, people who don't immunise their children can for want of a better word become unwitting murderers to other peoples infants. I would be fine with people choosing not to immunise as long as they are also happy to be charged with murder if their child inadvertantly kills a someone elses child through spreading one of these highly contagious diseases.

Re:So... (1)

kaiidth (104315) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114858)

I wish your analysis were accurate, because it would be the simplest possible solution to the whole problem if it could be boiled down to personal responsibility. However, some people are allergic - not "OMG autism!" allergic, but simply allergic - to components like egg protein or gelatin. Those who were perfectly able to take the vaccine and decided not to because "OMG autism!" are increasing the risk for those who can't, and have to depend on others to do the responsible thing.

To compare with the examples you give - people have the right to drink, but not to undertake activities that might harm others while they are intoxicated (ie. driving, etc). Similarly, they are free to smoke, but there are increasingly strict limits on where and when - I'm in Britain and my personal opinion on the nanny state is unprintable, but I see that New York just banned smoking on beaches and in parks, so I guess Britain is not alone.

Why should we care what Bill Gates says on Autism? (0, Troll)

Sir_Sri (199544) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114544)

The problem is why does anyone care that Bill Gates says it? That's what got us into this mess in the first place, with soccer moms listening to jenny mccarthy, over, you know, actual experts. Sure, Bill Gates has apparently listened to experts, and is saying something sensible, but that's not a reason to give him a bunch of press over people who actually study and understand these things.

If he's giving money to eradicate polio then sure, he can have press over eradicating polio, and as part of that saying vaccines don't actually cause autism is fine. But the MSM jumping up and down like this is some great revelation because Bill Gates says it is the cause of all this in the first place. 'Your Kid has Autism so yu must be an expert on what causes autism! Your kid doesn't have autism and you gave them vaccines, vaccines must not cause autism!' The people who aren't taking polio vaccines (which is admittedly drops not injections but whatever), aren't doing it because they think vaccines cause autism; that group are yuppies in north America. The people not taking polio vaccines are doing it because they either think the government is out to sterilize them, are too poor to afford it, or believe the government has some other, random evil scheme to use vaccines against them.

Bill Gates is not an expert in vaccines. His correctly knowing that vaccines do not cause autism deserves no more press than my room-mate who makes 15k/year saying the same thing. The whole question asked by Gupta is a lead in for Bill Gates to make this statement, as though he is an authority on vaccines. . Except Dr. Gupta should be an expert, and should be behaving like one on medicine 'Mr Gates, we know that there was a discredited study linking autism to vaccines. How does that sort of fraud impact your work distributing polio vaccines' , not 'in 1998 they linked autism to vaccines, what do you make of it'.

Re:Why should we care what Bill Gates says on Auti (0)

Super Dave Osbourne (688888) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114626)

Sadly Bill Gates is... Bill Gates. I agree, we should be looking at research that is actually sound, A/B blind studies, and real unbiased/sponsored statistics. Bill Gates Foundation is in competition for the media and minds of anyone out there, and they have billions a year to spend on it. Gates Foundation has a Board, and that board has an agenda (whatever it is). Find out where the money flows, to and from DC and to and from the Foundation, then you will find out the Foundation is getting big bucks from donors like Big Pharm and Gov. Just follow the money, its all written down as part of the docs filed and public record. Its a huge scam, selling crap to people that don't need it.

Re:Why should we care what Bill Gates says on Auti (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114802)

What would be more interesting is if Bill admits he's actually on the Autism spectrum. Don't believe he's ever said it but it has been proposed that he has asburgers.

Re:Why should we care what Bill Gates says on Auti (1)

Mindcontrolled (1388007) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114642)

Well, he listens to experts and spends his cash accordingly, while Jenny McCarthy talks out of her arse. See the difference?

Re:Why should we care what Bill Gates says on Auti (1)

Relayman (1068986) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114694)

Why does anyone care about Bill Gates' position on vaccines? Because he and his foundation are trying to help children around the world, partly by using vaccines to eradicate childhood diseases. Your anger is misplaced.

Re:Why should we care what Bill Gates says on Auti (2)

Quarters (18322) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114734)

You totally discount (well, outright ignore) the fact that Bill Gates is the head of the largest foundation on earth that has an aim of vaccinating every child on the planet. He has hundreds, if not thousands, of expert physicians working for him around the globe. When he says something public related to vaccinations he probably knows what he is talking about. Yes, I agree that listening to Jenny McCarthy, et. al about vaccinations was stupid. But that was because they didn't have any knowledge of the problem, just hearsay. But, dismissing Bill Gates for the same reason is exhibiting the same ignorance as the people who listened to the celebrities.

sometimes the truth hurts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114550)

If not for 25 years of Microsoft's anti-competitive (and often outright illegal) behavior against Apple, Netscape, Sybase, Sun, Lotus, Borland, Digital Research, IBM, Adobe/Macromedia, and just about everyone else in the software business, the investment in research and vaccines against Malaria and HIV might never have been funded.

Yeah Yeah, I'll Say It (1)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114566)

I agree with Bill Gates. Apparently the winter has been so cold even hell has frozen over. We should hold the instigators of this movement accountable for the lives their lies have cost, and we should make such a harsh example of them that it's remembered for generations to come.

I still think it should be to parents to decide (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114570)

I am a father and don't know who Dr Wakefield is and still decided not to vaccinate my son for pertussis and rota virus. I just don't think, based on my research, that odds are favorable. I also shifted other vaccines to later months. My family has a history of middle ear infections so I did PCV7 as quickly as possible.

Family ethics (1)

AbrasiveCat (999190) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114584)

Bill was raised by ethical parents and learned to compete very well. He is a smart man and made his money (mostly?) honestly. I may not agree with all his decisions but I agree with him on this one. Dr. Andrew Wakefield has cause many people to die, and the Dr Wakefield made money from it.

Where Bill should be taking this (1)

thogard (43403) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114614)

I think he should get a few movies made about Typhoid Mary targeting different demographics and then start running ads along the lines of "Don't let your kid be the next Typhoid Mary". I would even try to get Jenny McCarthy as one of the actors to dilute her message.

The numbers, like Sales of Windows, don't add up. (1, Interesting)

Dcnjoe60 (682885) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114666)

I am all for Mr. Gates philanthropy. However, the World Health Organization reports 164,000 deaths per year from measles (which is the leading cause of death among children), not the millions claimed by Mr. Gates. In addition, WHO reports that 83% of all children are vaccinated against the measles and that those who aren't are mainly poor countries without access.

Re:The numbers, like Sales of Windows, don't add u (1)

Relayman (1068986) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114836)

Exactly. When I saw that claim, I wanted to say [citation needed].

Hey Bill (-1, Troll)

JonJ (907502) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114668)

When are you going to use some common sense to fix the whole industry you fucked up?

Re:Hey Bill (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114868)

Probably when you stop being a butthurt freetard.

Gates @ TED... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114724)

youtube.com/watch?v=cQJAPcPnrzg

Start @ 2:28: "Now the world today has 6.8 billion people; that's headed up to about 9 billion. Now if we do a really great job on new vaccines, health care, reproductive health services, we could lower that by perhaps 10 or 15 percent."

drugs' freedom (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114748)

So if we were to make drug manufacturing knowledge and procedures "open-source", he would be pro-anti-vaccine?

sure (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114758)

yes, and Bill Gates worrying about this kind of shit kills Microsoft... little by little

Topical (5, Informative)

benjfowler (239527) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114764)

Topical, especially since the US suffers from torrents of anti-vax stupidity, which they're exporting by the ton.

Like that rather horrible, stupid, overweight and unattractive woman, Meryl Dorey, an American who is now living in the Northern Rivers of NSW, Australia, and spreading vile antivax propaganda and lies. Immunisation rates have plummeted in the Northern Rivers, and now, diseases thought gone for 50 years are making a big comeback.

And don't get me started about the stupid Muslims in Nigeria, who won't immunize their kids against polio, because some unwashed imam somewhere claimed in a sermon that the polio vaccine is a plot by teh evil jooooos to sterilize Muslims.

Normally, I wouldn't care about antivaxxers, but their evil, vile lies and willful stupidity -- all done in the name of self-aggrandisment -- is threatening the lives of innocent people who can't make informed decisions of their own.

Have a very personal grip with anti-vac nutjobs. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35114804)

I have a family member who is blind and disabled from birth due to her mother contracting Rubella (known as German Measles) while she was pregnant. This was around the time the MMR vaccine was being introduced.

Naturally she has to fight an urge to strangle anyone who is anti-vaccine.

It's really amazing . . . (0)

sfarber53 (239131) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114816)

how even Bill Gates gets to be right once in a while. After all, a stopped clock will always be right twice a day.

A seemingly minor quibble (1)

grasshoppa (657393) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114878)

Hurray for Gates, saying what needs to be said. However...

It's not just mothers making these decision, but fathers too. Both parents make these decisions.

Back in the 70's . . . (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 3 years ago | (#35114894)

My primary school required a vaccination certificate from your family doctor. No vaccination, no school. Period. Recently, I busted up my nose in an accident on the balcony of my apartment. Nothing serious, but when my doctor heard that I work with some folks from India, he shot me with with a cocktail against Tetanus, Diphtheria and Polio. He told me that Polio is eradicated in Europe (where I live), but not in India.

I don't have any children, but if I did, I'd ask my doctor to give them the whole shebang.

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