Tag Archives: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

We all need to understand Basic Vaccine Safety

In this modern age of the Coronavirus Calamity, and especially when many pharmaceutical companies are rushing to be the producer of the Victorious Vaccine — so they can forever advertise “WE did it!” — we all need to know a couple of very important basics.

BASIC FACT #1. By the early 1980s, pharmaceutical companies faced crippling liability for injuries to children caused by their vaccines. (Read those last four words again: caused by their vaccines.) Instead of letting market forces drive them to develop safer vaccines, the US Congress passed the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act (the “1986 Act”). This legislation eliminated all liability on the part of pharmaceutical companies for injuries caused by their vaccine products.

BASIC FACT #2. Since 1986, Merck, GSK, Sanofi, and Pfizer have paid billions of dollars (billions of dollars) for misconduct and injuries related to their drug products. These are the companies which make and sell nearly all childhood vaccines, but because of the Act mentioned in #1 above, they again cannot be held liable for misconduct and resulting injuries caused by their vaccine products.

To summarize the above two points: Big Pharma thus has NO INCENTIVE TO MANUFACTURE SAFE VACCINES.

The US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is legally responsible to defend against any claim that a vaccine has caused an injury. HHS is represented in such legal cases by the formidable resources of the US Department of Justice. (DOJ). In virtually every case, the injured person must prove that the vaccine caused the injury, which is legally a high hurdle to overcome. Nevertheless, since 1986 HHS has paid out over $4 billion for vaccine injuries.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are both agencies within HHS. If HHS publishes any study in the medical field which supports that a vaccine causes harm, that study will then be used against HHS in a vaccine legal action. Bottom line: THIS GREATLY LIMITS ANY INCENTIVE FOR HHS TO PUBLISH SAFETY STUDIES.

Side Note A: The CDC uses and enforces something called the Childhood Vaccine Schedule which tells doctors how and when to administer the commonly used vaccines. The US Congress has repeatedly found that members of the CDC and FDA committees responsible for approving licensed and recommended childhood vaccines have serious conflicts of interest with the pharmaceutical companies.

Side Note B: Federal law requires that for any vaccine in public use, the package insert include “adverse events for which there is some basis to believe there is a causal relationship between the drug and the occurrence of the adverse event.” Inserts for commonly and widely-used childhood vaccines include over ONE HUNDRED serious immune, neurological and other chronic conditions that manufacturers had reason to believe are caused by their vaccines. Adverse vaccine events are supposed to be reported to the CDC through a designated process, but according to a Harvard Medical School three-year study of this process, these adverse events are grossly under-reported, meaning that there is a vastly greater number of adverse vaccine events than is reported to the CDC. However, the CDC continues to refuse to mandate or automate this reporting.

Side Note C: HHS and CDC have continued to recommend vaccines for all children even though they are well aware of pre-existing susceptibilities of many children. No studies have yet been done to identify children susceptible to vaccine harms. In fact, most vaccines nave never been evaluated for their potential to cause cancer, gene mutation, or infertility. Although autism is the most prevalent and the most controversial of claimed vaccine injuries, HHS and CDC continue to tell parents “Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism.” There are, however, NO MEDICAL STUDIES which prove this statement. In addition, though HHS is mandated by law to insure vaccine safety, it has admitted in federal court that it has not performed even the most basic requirements of the law included in which is submission of reports to the US Congress on how it is addressing and improving this issue.

For further information on all the above, please visit the Informed Consent Action Network online at ICANdecide.org.


As always, posted for your edification and enlightenment by

NORM ‘n’ AL, Minneapolis

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If the economy is improving, why are Americans so unhappy?

A picture of unhappy Americans...

The economy may be improving, but many Americans are still miserable.

Some people recently expressed surprise that New York City — the home of Broadway, the Statue of Liberty and Central Park — was ranked as the No. 1 city where Americans are unhappiest, according to an analysis of data from the U.S. Census and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention authored by economists at Harvard University and the University of British Columbia.

“Newer residents of these cities appear to be as unhappy as longer term residents, and yet some people continue to move to these areas,” it found. (Incidentally, Lafayette, La. ranked No. 1 for the happiest.)

Other studies have suggested that Americans are increasingly unhappy. In fact, they’re less happy compared with a decade ago, according to a recent Fox News poll jointly conducted by Anderson Robbins Research and Shaw & Company Research. Some 53% of Americans were “very happy” or “happy.” And while that’s a (slim) majority, it’s still down from 56% in 2009 and a significant slump from 68% in 2001, previous studies concluded. And the rate of antidepressant use has surged 400% over the last decade, according to the CDC, though that may also be due to the heavy marketing of drugs like Zoloft, Lexapro and Paxil.

There’s been some backlash online. This grouchy video mash-up of “It’s a Wonderful Life” and Pharrell Williams’ “Happy” has clocked up over 100,000 views.

“We need to look at why we are unhappy,” says Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, founder of the Art of Living spiritual movement and, most recently, a free app to track your happiness called Truly Happy. Shankar, who lives in Bangalore, India, and is one of the most high-profile spiritual leaders in India, says unhappy people often need direction. “Usually, it’s lack of energy in body and mind,” he says. Our consumer culture doesn’t help. “When people are fed up with their routine, and life seems to have no aim and meaning, then people do get depressed, despite having so many physical comforts,” he says.

One reason for all the unhappiness could be that wages are stagnant and many people are still struggling to recover from the Great Recession. “Money is a little like health, you don’t want to talk about it with your friends because there’s a little bit of shame around it,” says Andrew Meadows, consumer and brand ambassador at The Online 401(k), a fee-based retirement plan provider based in San Francisco. Some 36% of Americans have not saved any money for retirement, according to a new Bankrate.com survey. Some people think you need to have tens of thousands of dollars to start saving and investing, so rather than save or invest a little, they do nothing, Meadows says. “They ask if there’s going to be another crash.”

But there’s a lot you can do to turn your frown upside down. Acquiring a more positive outlook does take work, says Jackie Ruka, founder of Get Happy Zone, a professional development organization. “Savor ordinary events, avoid comparisons, keep a gratitude journal, have meaningful goals, exercise and put money low on the list,” she says. “Engage in some social service activity,” Shankar adds.

Indeed, Americans are generous when it comes to helping the less fortunate: 65% of Americans volunteered their time in 2013, a survey by Gallup found, up from 59% in 2004.

MarketWatch asked a panel of experts — some financial rather than spiritual gurus — why we’re feeling glum. Here’s what they said:

We are zoning out with gadgets

Computers help us escape from our emotions, studies suggest. Sixth grade children who spent five days at a summer camp without technology had significantly improved emotional cognition — recognizing different emotions on others — than those who spent 4.5 hours a day at home texting, watching TV and gaming, according to a new study of 100 kids by researchers at UCLA and published in the latest edition of the journal Computers in Human Behavior. Understanding emotion is a critical skill, especially for young children, says Yalda Uhls, co-author and senior researcher at the Children’s Digital Media Center at UCLA. “It’s been linked to positive academic and social outcomes,” she says.

50% of people feel stressed

Did your dry cleaner sigh (loudly) when he set eyes on your mound of dirty laundry last night? Did another driver cut you off on your way to work this morning? There could be a reason why: Almost half of Americans said they’d experienced a major stressful event in the last year, according to a recent survey of 2,500 adults by National Public Radio, the non-profit Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Harvard School of Public Health. Young adults were more overwhelmed by responsibilities while older adults cited health problems, but both suffer almost equal amounts of stress. People often respond by sleeping less, eating less and exercising less. “Meditation and breathing exercises can help eliminate stress and renew enthusiasm,” Shankar says.

Lifestyles of the rich and famous

The way movie stars lived 40 years ago — except, perhaps, Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton in their heyday — pales in comparison with the lifestyles of Internet billionaires today, says Dean Baker, a co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank in Washington, D.C. “Today’s billionaires have islands and yachts,” he says. Reality TV and celebrity magazines are ubiquitous, he says. People who share about their fabulous vacation on Facebook are not going to help most Americans feel better. And keeping up with the Joneses is tougher now because of sites like Facebook. In the past, people might have been jealous if their neighbor drove up in a new car, but now they see a constant stream of their friends on seemingly fabulous vacations and at fancy cocktail parties rubbing shoulders with celebrities. “People are much less secure in their lives than they were before the crash,” Baker says.

There are no siestas in the U.S.

“Americans are among the hardest working people in the world,” says Mark Hamrick, Washington, D.C. bureau chief with personal finance website Bankrate.com. The U.S. is one of the few countries in the industrialized world that does not require employers to offer paid parental leave. What’s more, Americans only take half of their paid vacation days, recent research by market research firm Harris Interactive and careers website Glassdoor found. The U.S. is one of the few developed countries that doesn’t require employers to provide paid time off. Americans also work 40 hours per week, more than many European countries. In the U.K., for instance, most companies offer workers four to five weeks of paid vacation when they join.

Many Americans are unhealthy

People self-soothe with food when they might be better served having some physical exercise, which could help reduce the obesity epidemic in the country, Hamrick says. More than one-quarter of American adults define themselves as obese, according to the Well-Being Index calculated by market research group Gallup and health-care consultancy Healthways. But the real obesity rate is closer to one-third of the population, says Margo G. Wootan, director of nutrition policy at the Washington, D.C.-based non-profit Center for Science in the Public Interest, as many people (intentionally or not) underestimate their own body weight. Too much sugar consumption is also one of the most direct causes of Type 2 diabetes, Wootan says.

[by Quentin Fottrell, writing for MARKETWATCH]


NORM ‘n’ AL Note:  We would like to insert another thought about happiness, if we may. HAPPINESS usually depends on what is HAPPENING around you, as the similarity in these words obviously indicates. They come from the same Middle English root word.

What works best for us and for many others is to concentrate on JOY rather than happiness. Forget what is happening around you, or happening to you, and focus on the bigger picture, which is where JOY comes from. Is it possible to be JOYFUL in spite of negative things that are happening? Absolutely. All we have to do is focus on the source of our joy.

Here’s a verse from the Bible that addresses this very thing: “Consider it all joy, my brethren [brothers, associates, countrymen, good friends], when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.” (James 1:2-3)  Obviously James is giving this advice in a Christian context, telling his fellow believers that they should focus on the source of their true joy, the savior Jesus, and the eternal life that only He provides. In other words, there is true joy and security which comes from faith in Jesus, because Jesus proved He was the Messiah by His miracles, by his life among the disciples, and by his death and resurrection.  James is simply telling us to keep our eyes on Jesus, not on the things going on around us which can be so ugly and distracting.

One other thought before we leave for the day: Consider the word JOY. J-O-Y. It helps to put this word in a contemporary Christian context through a helpful word association: Jesus – Others – You. Put Jesus first and put others ahead of yourself, and you will realize true joy in this life AND in the life to come. Remember Mother Teresa? This is precisely the way she lived.


As always, posted for your edification and enlightenment by

NORM ‘n’ AL, Minneapolis


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