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  1. colleenb Member
    colleenb Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    It was hard to glean how Mr. Epstein really feels about Rand Paul. (sarc off)

    • #1
    • May 15, 2019, at 11:31 AM PDT
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  2. Dorrk Member

    I thought that Epstein might have touched on this early on, but mentioned it in passing and then moved on to the broader issues that have been hashed out a million times already: There is a small percentage of the population who are adversely affected by vaccinations. Not Autism (which is more of a stick with which to beat anti-vaxxers than it is a major concern of anti-vaxxers), but allergic reactions and hundreds of other potential adverse reactions. The issue for many who are vaccine-hesitant (not “anti-“), is that the system imposing mandatory vaccinations does not sufficiently allow for medical exemptions when needed. This is why religious and philosophical exemptions have become so important to this tiny minority, to compensate for the practical impossibility of getting a medical exemption. Doctors who want to write medical exemptions won’t do it out of fear of institutional reprisal and the medical boards that approve exemptions limit them to an absurdly small number of contraindications and require affected patients to go through repeated exposure to the injuring vaccines in order to claim an exemption.

    To answer the question that he didn’t bother to look up, the government-run Adverse Effects Reporting System for Vaccines has paid out over $4 billion in compensation to a very small number of cases over 40 years. I did the math a while ago, but it came to about $600k per award, so these are major health effects. Statistically, the number of affected people may be insignificant, but it doesn’t seem insignificant when you’re the one whose kid has been killed or brain damaged by a mandatory program. Also, a research group fro some ivy league school determined that less than 10% of adverse vaccine effects are even reported to this system.

    Here are the questions I think a Libertarian should be asking of themselves and the vaccine system:

    1. What does a mandatory government program owe to the citizens who will be the most adversely affected by it? (Presumably the answer isn’t: no accountability, no transparency; plus: social ostracisation and media campaigns depicting them as kooks.)
    2. How would a more-free market for vaccine development be able to mollify some of the anti-vaxx resistance? For example, a large number of anti-vaxxers are concerned about allergies to toxic adjuvants in vaccines, like mercury. How about some alternatives that feature fewer toxins?
    3. Does the exponential increase in the number of vaccines and vaccine doses that have been added to CDC guidelines over the decades raise any concerns over the way that new vaccines are added to the schedule? (For example, why should pre-adolescent kids who do not have a Hep-B positive mother be required to have Hep-B vaccines?).
    4. Are there any other situations in which libertarians will so glibly deny a natural right to health decisions and bodily autonomy? If so, what are they?
    • #2
    • May 16, 2019, at 2:07 PM PDT
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