News

Michael Leunig On Vaccination: “I Think The Science Is Incomplete, I Honestly Do”

"I think the science is incomplete, I honestly do."

As he’s best known for making whimsical musings about a small crudely-drawn duck, Michael Leunig last month found himself in unfamiliar territory facing serious accusations of being negligent about public health. Following on from the government’s controversial “No Jab No Pay” policy, one of his cartoons in The Age appeared to defend mothers who choose not to vaccinate their children and, in turn, he faced widespread criticism.

On social media a number of people called him out as an anti-vaxxer, some argued it was irresponsible for The Age to publish the cartoon, and others whose family members had suffered from preventible diseases took personal offence.

Though Leunig himself refused to clarify his thoughts on the issue itself, a spokesperson told us, “His cartoon on the subject addresses the issues of hostility towards those who choose not to have their children vaccinated and defends their right to a personal position”.

Now, in an interview with ABC News Breakfast this morning, he’s finally expounded on that view. Though he was invited on air to talk about his new cartoon collection Musings From The Inner Duck, the conversation inevitably turned towards this controversial issue (around 1.05).

“I think it’s a very significant moment when you ask the maternal instinct to absolutely step aside and accept what the conventional wisdom are saying [but] I’m not taking a position here publicly,” he says.

“The position I’m taking is … do we just sweep aside those mothers who, in great conscience and intelligence and research feel that they just can’t go ahead with this? Should we demonise them, criminalise them, should the whole society make them feel a pariah? I’m concerned about that. That’s the traditional work of the cartoonist, to stand up for the improbable minority, which seems to be of true heart and sincerity.”

Virginia Trioli counters Leunig’s concerns, pointing out that any scientific evidence against vaccination has been totally debunked — to which Leunig responds, “Well, science depends on whether you believe that science is the final say on everything.” Parents are entitled to be wary of the practice, he says, comparing it to the drug thalidomide: society once accepted the use of that drug, which caused mass birth defects in the 1950s and ’60s. (Though, as Trioli points out, this was due to a cover-up by the pharmaceutical company which manufactured it).

“[It’s] my job, not to march entirely with science; to be the improbable,” he told Trioli. “People like yourself, and [your cohost], and [many others] get heated up and say ‘stop this’ … Why so emotional?” 
To this Trioli responds with what is just a truly impressive amount of sass to have before 8am on a Friday: “It’s called public health”. Here’s the footage of that, slowed down for you:

The end of the segment seems to trail away from there, with Trioli frustrated by the debate she’s found herself in, and Leunig a little carried away with the verbal diarrhoea he’s let out after firmly stating he was “not taking a position publicly”.  

“If we cared about public health we wouldn’t design cities like this,” he said. “We wouldn’t have appalling television, dreadful media, you know, the public health is in disarray. At so many levels. All we are worried about this is this little needle … But I’m not standing against vaccination, it’s the individual conscience, it’s a matter of conscience. I was a conscience objector in the Vietnam war so I understand about it.”

With many viewers regarding these comments as further confirmation of the cartoonist’s opposition to vaccination, social media has been united almost unanimously against him.

There are those that are flagging his comments as hazardous misinformation:

Some renewing calls for his employer to take action against him:

And others who just feel a little jaded by the new meaning this all gives to his iconic cartoons:

Screen Shot 2015-05-29 at 2.48.44 pm

Leunig irl

Comments

Comments

  1. Terry Wrist says:

    Left wing authoritarians against freedom of speech shocker

  2. pto says:

    Idiot

  3. dawn says:

    Leunig is correct. A brave man to speak up against the misguided majority.

  4. Joan says:

    Wise words from Michael Leunig. The science is not clear as to the safety of vaccines.

  5. Ayn Rancid says:

    It’s okay to endanger children if you do it out of love? Shut up, luenig.

  6. MissEcoGlam says:

    What a brilliant man, sadly, idiot hosts though, doing typical interviews and saying such utter BS. one day they will realise what they have done.

  7. joejoev1 . says:

    The science is ‘clear cut’ on vaccines, they are ‘unavoidably unsafe’ according to the supreme court which is why there is a ‘vaccine court’, over 500 studies about the dangers of mercury, over 3 billion paid out to those that died or were injured by vaccines, the CDC went to great lengths to cover up the autism/vaccine link, but in the end the truth came out, which is that vaccines cause not just autism, but many others health detrements, so much for your science exonerating vaccines.

  8. NoniDoll says:

    Good to see the anti-vax astroturfers are out in force today.

    Hi guys! Hope you’re enjoying your herd immunity!

  9. Serum says:

    Spare me. Your vaccine induced herd immunity is a lie that you are being fed. And happily, you’re drinking the Kool-Aid.

  10. Pat N DeHat says:

    Who’s endangering whom?

  11. justine says:

    Agreed if only people actually thought bef

  12. Afraid of Crazed Needlers says:

    Look at which side just says “shut up” repeatedly. Not the side concerned about the dangers of mandatory vaccination. Just the side willing to not question and perpetuate the abuse.

  13. silkhead says:

    the host sounded like the church when Galileo came out with his sun centric universe…this “vax science is correct” is pure dogma

  14. Mark Delmege says:

    I’m with Leunig. Not all kids are the same. Hell some can’t even drink milk or eat oranges. No one size fits all. Some are damaged by multi jabs.

  15. independentmedia says:

    His comment that the media basically sucks is reallt self evident here. The pharama business in a multi billion dollar global business for a reason. What a brilliant mind barrated by talking heads.

  16. rockie says:

    He doesn’t have to be pro or anti-vax to make a cartoon that reflects how some parents feel about vaccine safety given that vaccines can and do cause damage and death. The vax max terrorists will have a field day with him and all I can think of is Charlie Hebdo…

  17. rockie says:

    Herd immunity ended when vaccines began. Vaccine immunity is not 100% effective or lifelong.

  18. Destiny Waters says:

    We are suffering the consequences of HERD MENTALITY, that has forgotten to ask questions…

  19. Destiny Waters says:

    He is referring to an innate wisdom that goes beyond time and space but obviously you lack this innate ability….

  20. aphoenix444 says:

    Big Pharma is also the one purchasing 70% of all advertisements on television, magazines and newspapers … old media which would wither up and die without this massive financial support. Can we trust what they say? Would they say anything that would lose them 70% of their ad revenue?

  21. A- says:

    Why not let the man speak? It’s very telling when entire populations have been conditioned to never question “science” at all. There are legit concerns pertaining to vaccines — people shouldn’t feel polarized not to speak on this topic. Science is ever-changing and forever-evolving. The USA has one of the highest infant mortality rates out of every first world country – and one of the most aggressive vaccine schedules. There are vast amounts of scientific studies, immunologists, chemists, medical professionals that disagree with the current pharmaceutical funded science. There are zero studies proving the current CDC childhood vaccine schedule is both safe and effective. There have been no studies testing for carcinogenic effects of certain vaccine ingredients: mainly aborted fetal DNA and animal DNA. However, there are studies that prove human DNA in vaccines is both damaging and detrimental to human health. When one looks at the history of disease- it’s apparent that vaccines were never the hero over their decline. Diseases were on a tremendous steep decline YEARS before the introduction of vaccines — thanks to adequate nutrition, indoor plumbing, and proper hygiene and sanitation. The polio vaccine was contaminated with the SV40 virus- which has now become part of our human make-up and is still found in cancer tissue today. Merck is currently in legal proceedings for fraudulently manipulating data on their MMR efficiency test. Merck deliberatey hid data pertaining to the mumps portion of the MMR vaccine. The pharmaceutical industry is riddled with corruption and fraud- along with the CDC. Poul Therson, the man responsible for the studies “proving” vaccines do not cause ASD- is now on the OIG’s most wanted list. He embezzled millions of dollars granted to him for the completion of these studies and gifted himself lavish homes, boats, motorcycles, etc. The ingredients in vaccines contain known neurotoxins at levels far exceeding EPA safety standards. There are numerous PhD chemist/biochemist reporting scientific studies exposing the horrendous dangers of injecting neurotoxins via vaccination: aluminum, formaldahyde, mercury, etc. When you read the studies advocating for vaccines – there are clear indications and evidence they are all tied to the pharmaceutical industry. It’s ludicrous and irresponsible to not research this topic in extensive detail – children’s lives are at stake. All people involved in silencing the questions of parents with vaccine injured or killed children – are just as much as fault for future vaccine-induced injuries or deaths. Declaring science as end-all/be-all settled science- isn’t just an insult to science, it’s a deliberate and anticipated violation on all basic human life.

  22. A- says:

    Your herd immunity doesn’t exist. It has destroyed real herd immunity – which is only possible from natural exposure to natural illness.

  23. A- says:

    Children being injected with known neurotoxins, aborted fetal DNA, animal DNA, GMO’s, etc is the only thing endangering to them. When one looks beyond pharmaceutical funded studies- and into real scientific studies, evidence shows the sheer toxic and damaging effects of vaccines. Further more, historic evidence shows that vaccines were never responsible for the decline of disease.

  24. Matthew Keath says:

    This must have posted on a anti vacc website looking at the brigade in the comments

  25. Vanessa Hill says:

    What a great way to state it: “Being truly informed instead of being blindly mislead.” So true. Sad that most people just regurgitate what they hear without researching.

  26. Scott CooperJohnston says:

    From the comments I am adding to here, it seems that social media is in fact, not entirely, “united almost unanimously against him”. the top two examples, for instance are high profile media boffins who may or may not rely on pharma-based advertising.

  27. Skeptical1 says:

    Humans are such ridiculous creatures. We strive (correctly) to tear down the god of religion, realising that immense damage that blind faith causes, and what calamities we bring upon ourselves when we hold to unquestionable authority. Then we replace it with the god of science. Apparently ad populem is only permitted when it is practised by the “scientific” community. Shame on you, Virginia Trioli, and good on you Michael Leunig for reminding us that no doctrine or dogma is beyond question.

  28. Skeptical1 says:

    haha love the name

  29. Terry Wrist says:

    Many of the food allergies kids have are caused by the vaccines destroying their immune systems at an early age.

  30. Jack Dan Blake says:

    What a shit article. Meg Watson belongs on bad Facebook comments, not as a paid journalist. this article celebrates the rudeness and ignorance of the ‘Host’ of the program who makes blanket (and condescending) statements like “It’s called public health”. The height of rudeness and ignorance. Once again someone (the host) claiming ownership of the ‘science’ without actually even approaching a demonstration of an understanding of the known risks and limitations of vaccines. Vaccines are considered by their manufacturers and by knowledgable public health officials and clinicians to be mostly safe and mostly effective. They are not 100% safe, they are not 100% effective. GIven that there IS a grey area, it is not black and white, people are able to chose based on their own risk assessment. Virginia Trioli does not seem to understand this and attacks Leunig based on a rigid and flawed dogma ( I know rigid and Dogma make it a tad tautological, but that’s how solid and brittle it is). What an awful exchange. Anyone with any decency can see that Leunig is simply encouraging clarity around the issues of persecuting others based on their very personal medical choices… this also translates to people’s religious and cultural choices. The attacks are the same.

    I am sorry Meg Watson and Virginia Trioli that you are so focussed on hatred of other. You need to soften the f*** up.

  31. Sim Reilly says:

    This article is pathetic.

  32. Ed Miller says:

    That is categorically incorrect and I would love to see where you got those statistics from. Nielsen data from 2014 shows that 70% of advertising spend comes from retail, motor vehicle, government, FMCG, and communications, with retail ad spend being the highest.

    There are severe restrictions on pharmaceutical advertising to consumers in Australia. You obviously have no idea what you are talking about.

  33. Terry Wrist says:

    I think the tide has turned, people have woken up and are pushing back against big pharma and their poisons.

  34. Ed Miller says:

    If you are referring to the Miller/Goldman study, well that has been debunked. There is no evidence that shows a direct link between vaccines and infant mortality rates.

  35. Terry Wrist says:

    Rofl…. studies authors funded by big pharma find vaccines “safe”
    Yeah great “proof” there pal.

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/big-pharma-vaccines-deemed-safe-by-big-pharma-funded-study/5389643

    While the report itself was funded by the US government, the RAND Corporation from which its authors were drawn is funded by the very corporations (.PDF page 70)
    that manufacture various vaccines, including the MMR vaccine which was the primary focus of the report. Big-pharma sponsors of RAND include GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Merck – that latter of which is listed by the US Center for Disease Control (CDC) specifically as the manufacturer of the MMR vaccine.

    Merck has also directly and openly funded other studies put out by RAND (here and here). RAND’s other big-pharma sponsor, GSK, has been recently exposed amid a global multi-billion dollar bribing scandal where it was paying off doctors to endorse and distribute their products.With Pediatrics’ report exposed as – at the very least – an irresponsible, unethical exercise in research, and at worst, corporate propaganda masquerading as a scientific paper, those considering whetheror not to have vaccines manufactured by deceitful pharmaceutical monopolies injected into their bodies, have an added incentive to hold off and search for alternatives.

  36. wirch says:

    She obviously has not looked at the Science. Here is a good read
    for the lady, But will she take the time to educated herself? Most
    likely not…

  37. Jack Dan Blake says:

    Followed by Idiot reportage celebrating the hosts position.

  38. Jack Dan Blake says:

    It’s the worst. Belongs in Facebook comments, not in a publication.

  39. june says:

    Thank goodness for Michael Leunig bringing a voice of compassion to the conversation around vaccines.

  40. Ed Miller says:

    Your response is completely unrelated. You seriously link to globalresearch.org for your answers? Explains a lot.

    The story you link to does not disprove or challenge the findings of the study – it merely points out who was involved in commissioning the study, which is stated in the paper in any case. It’s not big secret.

    Does your link question the methodology or the research model? Does it question the data collection and analysis? No.

    When you involve yourself in the discussion, try to contribute.

  41. Ed Miller says:

    You’re commenting on an Australian publisher’s site, on an article about an Australian cartoonist appearing on Australia’s national broadcaster. Outside of the US, nobody cares what happens within your walls.

    In any case, your evidence is an anecdote told over dinner? Really?

    Again, try actual data collection and analysis. You can find Nielsen’s advertising spend report for the US. Retail has the highest ad spend, followed by pharmaceutical, then motor, communications, FMCG, although the spends are quite close.

    In the context of this discussion, your article is bullshit.

  42. A- says:

    Ed: Providing pharmaceutical funded studies bring absolutely nothing of value to this conversation. Instead of wasting time arguing with people that question a broken system – question why the system is so broken.

  43. A- says:

    Last I checked the vaccine debate pertains to everyone. Especially since the vaccines we receive come from the same place. Do you know where your vaccines are made, Ed?

  44. Ed Miller says:

    I didn’t provide any studies. Merely pointed out that the most prominent paper that suggests infant mortality rate is proportionate to vaccine scheduling has been widely discredited due to its poor scientific method.

  45. Ed Miller says:

    The comment was very specifically about advertising spend, not where vaccines are made. Clearly two separate discussions, so I’m not sure how you can confuse the two?

  46. Sheryl M says:

    I am a nurse with 36 years of experience in all areas of general nursing and pathology collection. I think it’s the very opposite of maternal instinct to refuse to vaccinate one’s children. In my experience, it’s very proud, selfish, know-it-all people who are Anti-vaxxers. I also used to see parents who were afraid of needles who then transferred the fear to their children, and would refuse treatments and tests that involved a needle for the child. That’s not parental instinct, that’s just nuts.

  47. Judith says:

    Australia is one of the oppressed countries in the world when it comes to freedom to speak out about vaccines. Dr Sherry Tenpenny had her venues cancelled and was not allowed to speak. There is no debate allowed on TV or radio. Very few mainstream newspapers allow any comments except pro vaccine.

    The TGA gets all its funding from pharmaceutical companies. It has massive influence. The Health Consumers Council recognised the problems and made the following submission:

    “First, access to clinical and pharmaceutical data allows health professionals, independent researchers and information providers to review the data to make sure that published findings do not misrepresent the efficacy and safety of medicines.

    Second, regulatory decisions involve value judgements in balancing multiple data about the benefits and harms of medicines.These value judgements should be disclosed with the reasons for regulatory decisions. This would help people to make their own choices about whether the medicines are suitable for them.

    Third, as with many medicines agencies, the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) is now totally financed from fees paid by pharmaceutical companies. Its decisions will be increasingly subject to public scrutiny because of the worry about conflicts of interest. Transparency in pharmaceutical policy making is required to maintain public trust in the TGA.

    http://www.hconc.org.au/couch/uploads/file/hcc-senate-submission-on-pbs-tga-tranparency-reform-september-2014.pdf

    Three years ago, the Editorial Executive Committee of Australian Prescriber published a call for increased transparency in the regulation of prescription medicines.3 What has happened since then? A recent study compared the provision of information on the websites of national drug regulatory agencies.4 It found that the TGA ranked among the most ‘secret’ of the agencies. Assessment reports for new medicines, lists of refused or cancelled marketing authorisations, minutes of advisory meetings, and reports submitted by drug companies are not available publicly in Australia.”

  48. Judith says:

    Go Leunig – you are a brave man speaking up for the oppressed parents who are given no say or even debate about the vaccine issue. (shame on the mainstream media) You are so correct when you say that the science is not perfect. We have a right to use our gut instinct when it comes to putting “unavoidably unsafe” vaccines into our children.

    Dr. Richard Horton, the current editor-in-chief of the Lancet – considered to be one of the most well respected peer-reviewed medical journals in the world has this to say.

    Dr. Horton recently published a statement declaring that a lot of published research is in fact unreliable at best, if not completely false.

    “The case against science is straightforward: much of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue. Afflicted by studies with small sample sizes, tiny effects, invalid exploratory analyses, and flagrant conflicts of interest, together with an obsession for pursuing fashionable trends of dubious importance, science has taken a turn towards darkness.” (source)

    This is quite disturbing, given the fact that all of these studies (which are industry sponsored) are used to develop drugs/vaccines to supposedly help people, train medical staff, educate medical students and more.

    Dr. Marcia Angell, a physician and longtime Editor in Chief of the New England Medical Journal (NEMJ), which is considered to another one of the most prestigious peer-reviewed medical journals in the world, makes her view of the subject quite plain:

    “It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines. I take no pleasure in this conclusion, which I reached slowly and reluctantly over my two decades as an editor of the New England Journal of Medicine” (source)

  49. Judith says:

    It is also one of the most corrupt and criminal organisations in the world. This alone should make us very wary of being forced to have vaccinations.

    ” Merck has known for a decade that its mumps
    vaccine is “far less effective” than it tells the government, and it
    falsified test results and sold millions of doses of “questionable
    efficacy,” flooding and monopolizing the market, a primary caregiver
    claims in a federal antitrust class action. Alabama-based Chatom Primary Care sued Merck on Monday, the week after the unsealing of a False Claims Act complaint two relators filed in 2010.
    Those relators, Stephen Krahling and Joan Wlochowski, were Merck virologists
    who claim in their unsealed complaint that they “witnessed firsthand the
    improper testing and data falsification in which Merck engaged to
    artificially inflate the vaccine’s efficacy findings.” http://www.courthousenews.com/

    In 2004 after causing an estimated 60,000 deaths worldwide primarily from heart attacks and strokes, Merck pharmaceuticals bestselling arthritis drug Vioxx was withdrawn from sale worldwide. Priorto that Vioxx’s manufacturer Merck had ‘mounted a ghost-writing campaign’ to promote Vioxx. 96 articles were published, some of which omitted to mention the deaths of patients who participatedin clinical trials of the drug.26 Not only did it promote dishonest conduct, Merck had ‘drawn up a hitlist of “rogue” researchers who had criticised Vioxx [who] had to be discredited and ‘neutralized’.27

    Recent revelations that Boehringer Ingelheim, the maker of anti-coagulant drug Pradaxa, had withheld some of their internal analysis that suggested that patients should have their blood levels monitored. Pradaxa has been ‘associated with 280 deaths in Australia and 1,400 adverse drug reactions in the past five years, including abdominal bleeding, brain haemorrhages, strokes and heart attacks.’

    In 2009 Eli Lilly paid $1.415 billion in fines and settlements for the ‘off-label’ promotion of Zyprexa. Eli Lily were fined for the off-label promotion for its use with dementia patients.40

    Pfizer was fined $2.3 billion, then the largest health care fraud settlement and the largest criminal fine ever imposed in the United States. Pfizer pled guilty to misbranding the painkiller Bextra with “the intent to defraud or mislead”,The government alleged that Pfizer also promoted three other drugs illegally: the antipsychotic Geodon, an antibiotic Zyvox, and the antiepileptic drug Lyrica.

    2012 GlaxoSmithKline agreed to pay a fine of $3 billion to resolve civil and criminal liabilities regarding its promotion of drugs, as well as its failure to report safety data. GlaxoSmithKline also pled guilty to failing to disclose safety information about the diabetes drug Avandia to the FDA.

    2013 Johnson & Johnson agreed to pay a $2.2 billion fine to resolve criminal and civil allegations relating to the prescription drugs Risperdal, Invega and Natrecor. T

    2009 Eli Lilly was fined $1.42 billion to resolve a government investigation into the off-label promotion of the antipsychotic Zyprexa. The government also alleged that Lilly targeted primary care physicians to promote Zyprexa for unapproved uses and “trained its sales force to disregard the law.”

    2010 AstraZeneca was fined $520 million to resolve allegations that it illegally promoted the antipsychotic drug Seroquel.

    2012 Abbott was fined $1.5 billion in connection to the illegal promotion of the antipsychotic drug Depakote.

    In the USA, pharmaceutical companies are free to determine who conducts their studies, which studies they publish and which they keep private. Some pharmaceutical companies use two methods to deny the FDA and the American public full information. The first is to ignore unfavourable studies. The second is to spin the results of unfavourable findings for the ‘primary outcome’ – the main question the study was designed to answer – and highlight a favourable ‘secondary outcome’.58

  50. Judith says:

    Herd immunity is being seriously challenged.
    UNSW have found that 80% of cases of whooping cough are strains that do not respond to the vaccine – so why blame the unvaccinated?

    http://www.techtimes.com/articles/5608/20140415/whooping-cough-bacterium-evolves-mutation-makes-existing-vaccine-less-effective.htm#ixzz3J7XlXGPH

    “So far, it has been bad news as experts have found out the bacteria causing whooping cough have evolved.

    “This could mean that these pertactin-free strains have gained a selective advantage over bacterial strains with the pertactin protein,” said Ruiting Lan, senior author of the latest study on whooping cough and associate professor at School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences at the University of New South Wales.”

    The team of experts, led by UNSW PhD candidate Connie Lam, have looked into cases of whooping cough from across Australia and have found out that roughly 80 percent of the cases in 2012 were due to strains of the bacterium that do not have pertactin.

    “The fact that they have arisen independently in different countries suggests this is in response to the vaccine.

    Also people who have been vaccinated against pertussis can still cary the disease.

    The FDA published a study they had conducted on the pertussis vaccine, admitting that cases of whooping cough were increasing among a highly vaccinated public. They studied the effect of the vaccine on baboons, and found out that vaccinated baboons still carried around whooping cough in their throats, spreading it to others. The N.Y. Times actually reported on this in their “Health Section”.

    a report was published by the Financial Post titled Vaccines Cannot Prevent Measles Outbreaks. Its author, Lawrence Solomon, reported on a paper written by Professor of Medicine and founder and leader of the Mayo Clinic’s Vaccine Research Group, Professor Gregory A. Poland, titled The Re-emergence of Measles in Developed Countries, which was published two years ago.

    “Thus, while an excellent vaccine, a dilemma remains. As previously mentioned, measles is extraordinarily transmissible. At the same time, measles vaccine has a failure rate measured in a variety of studies at 2 –10%, and modeling studies suggest that herd immunity to measles requires approximately 95% or better of the population to be immune.”

    Therefore blaming unvaccinated people for not creating herd immunity is a myth – both vaccinated and unvaccinated spread the disease and will continue to do so. The best defence is a health immune system, high vitamin d levels, good diet, avoiding stress.

  51. Judith says:

    ‘Know it all parents” I have friends who are nurses and they have commented on the high number of children who now have chronic illness such as auto immune disease – they have seen adverse reactions from vaccines first hand.

    An entire issue of Lupus [11,table of contents at http://lup.sagepub.com/content/21/2.toc ] was recently devoted to ‘ASIA’ – autoimmune/inflammatory syndrome induced by adjuvants [12], with at least 9 papers each presenting data indicating numerous autoimmune problems are caused by vaccine adjuvants. Injections of aluminum into infant rats and mice in amounts comparable to what human infants receive resulted in brain inflammation and damage [13, 2 sec 4.5], and in an experiment where an analog of the aluminum content of the US vaccine series, and of the Swedish vaccine series, were injected into infant mice, the US series resulted in huge behavioral deficits (and 50% heavier adult mice) and the Swedish series resulted in lesser problems [14].

    http://whyarethingsthisway.com/2014/03/08/example-1-pediatrician-belief-is-opposite-the-published-scientific-evidence-on-early-vaccine-safety/

  52. Sheryl M says:

    They are either lying about being nurses or lying about what they have seen. By the way, this study is not peer reviewed. So not science. It’s one of the several fraudulent studies that are regularly dragged out by the lying anti-vaxxers who want to be right more than they want children to be safe. Any parent who refuses to have their children vaccinated is a child abuser. By allowing their children to be exposed to the risk of life-threatening disease in the light of all the TRUE science that shows vaccination to be perfectly safe, they are risking not only their own children’s lives, but the lives of thousands of other children. Don’t try pushing your unsubstantiated propaganda on me, and don’t try to tell me you know nurses who say they have seen first hand some damage that they think might have been caused by vaccines. You might as well say that a child will get autism if they have a haircut. Any nurse who pushes such rubbish should be ashamed of themselves, and they should be reported to their registration authority.

  53. Judith says:

    So you have such faith in peer reviewed science – my nursing and medical friends have become very cynical unfortunately as have I.

    Dr. Richard Horton, the current editor-in-chief of the Lancet – considered to be one of the most well respected peer-reviewed medical journals in the world has this to say.

    Dr. Horton recently published a statement declaring that a lot of published research is in fact unreliable at best, if not completely false.

    “The case against science is straightforward: much of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue. Afflicted by studies with small sample sizes, tiny effects, invalid exploratory analyses, and flagrant conflicts of interest, together with an obsession for pursuing fashionable trends of dubious importance, science has taken a turn towards darkness.” (source)

    This is quite disturbing, given the fact that all of these studies (which are industry sponsored) are used to develop drugs/vaccines to supposedly help people, train medical staff, educate medical students and more.

    Dr. Marcia Angell, a physician and longtime Editor in Chief of the New England Medical Journal (NEMJ), which is considered to another one of the most prestigious peer-reviewed medical journals in the world, makes her view of the subject quite plain:

    “It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines. I take no pleasure in this conclusion, which I reached slowly and reluctantly over my two decades as an editor of the New England Journal of Medicine” (source)

  54. ev meyer says:

    Thank you so much….you are very brave to go public and receive such an outrageous reaction…this is about freedom of choice…I will not be pressurd to vaccinate my kids…take your money and your diseases and vaccination injuries

  55. jen says:

    how come I can research and find enough information to make me question the validity of vaccinations and others can’t? God bless you Michael Leunig….you are just being a voice of reason. Let’s stop the persecution of those that question medical science, when medical science has been proven to be wrong many times before. It doesn’t make sense to accept additives in our food can affect our children, but deny injecting them with toxins is safe? Wake up Australia. Lets question the drug companies, not each other. They are the ones making all the gain here.

  56. Judith says:

    The study in Vaccine titled “What lied behind the low rates of vaccinations among nurses who treat infants?” is evidence of a growing resistance to vaccinating infants in the developed world.

  57. Dorothy Fitzer says:

    Good for him! People afraid to question anything scare the hell out of me. And all this BS about “science”. Well, real science isn’t afraid to question itself and put itself to the test. It’s constantly evolving and proving itself wrong. So – anyone who waves the flag of science and thinks they have a final say in the truth is completely deluded.
    Michael Leunig – Well Done Sir!
    (I’m a mom. I definitely have my own very well researched opinions on vaccines – but I don’t even feel the need to go into them here because all this reactive, simple-minded, fear-based stone throwing at him isn’t even worth an intelligent argument – because their brains are on autopilot anyway.)

  58. Sean Burke says:

    Wow, Let the man speak. Bravo. It comes down to should parents be allowed to opt out some or all vaccines. I say yes. Governments around the world are attempting to mandate every dose of every vaccine on the government schedule. Who owns your body, you or the state. There is a reason trust is waning and it has nothing to do with what the conventional people say it is. Health outcomes in children are getting worse and worse the more vaccines with mandate. In California you get 30 before the age of one. There is sound public health policies but the vaccines schedule we have now is not one. Be honest and open about risks. Have a more responsible policy and the issue will go away. Weird that you can’t even question. Strange that people will allow themselves to injected with whatever is put in the government schedule with out recourse. I have no idea who this guy is but I like him.

  59. Tom Goffnett says:

    It was a set up from the very beginning. It was a success. All the television zombies are always going to side with their television friends.

    What does anyone know about science? We know that mercury is extremely toxic to human beings. With that knowledge we have to conclude that whoever came up with the idea of using mercury as a preservative in vaccines is either Satan or just a complete freaking moron. What idiot decided to put mercury into the concoction they inject into NEW BORN BABIES? 1 in 6 with neurological disorders, 1 in 68 with autism and EVERYTHING IS RIGHT ON SCHEDULE (excuse the phun). Lets ask some very basic questions.

    1. Is it okay to inject Aluminum into a human beings bloodstream?
    2. Is it okay to inject formaldehyde into a human beings bloodstream?
    3. Is it okay to inject mercury into a human beings bloodstream?
    4 Is it okay to inject monkey kidney cells into a human beings bloodstream?
    5. Is it okay to inject remnants of an aborted baby into a human beings bloodstream?

    A witch doctor wouldn’t come up with this brew. We allow our new born babies to be Injected with this foolishness all because someone said, “don’t worry, it is safe”. If we are going to believe the doctors, we only have ourselves to blame.

  60. Belinda says:

    Why are people only focused on the mothers of the children? Its the 21st century, surely your child’s health is both parents’ concern and responsibility.

  61. Bob Rtarp says:

    we are being lied to from all angles. dumbed down , poisoned and taken advantage of. pretty simple stuff.

  62. Pauli C says:

    you are a brainwashed trained monkey….nothing you say is real it is propaganda…because it is not “peer reviewed” by the cheer squad of the pharmaceutical industrydoes not mean it is not science…your vitriol and abuse is classic cognitive dissonance reaction of a idiot that cant stand their reality being even challenged…people like you hate real science.
    then you are a medical fascist to end with it….pathetic…Judith gave you to much respect in her response.

  63. Pauli C says:

    it wont matter what you say or how much scientific research is carried out to show the real dangers of vaccines. Those that are so convinced that they attach their very identity to vaccines being the wonder drugs they falsely claim to be will never listen. They will go so far as to completely discount any evidence that challenges their religious belief in corporate medicine.

  64. Pauli C says:

    calling for natural health management as a way to combat disease is considered anti science by the devotes of vaccines. This lunatic group of ignorant trained monkeys dont even read the latest research they rest their complete understanding on propaganda and marketing slogans. Its almost useless providing them with research they dont read it….they just say its been debunked and drag out some well polished meta data study from some pharamcutical think tank and call you and your research quacks, pseudo science or tin foil hat freak…the debate has become farcical as the corporate media continue to promote propaganda and tailored research and insult belittle dismiss anyone that challenges it. Dr Wakefields study has been shown to be correct by close to 30 study across the world, his Co-Author has been exonerated by the UK courts and the judge slammed the UK medical board for its handling of the case, Wakefield is in an ongoing law suit and will win….you wont hear about it unless you are actually looking for the information….those that are devotes to vaccines dont look for anything they just accept as gospel what they are force feed by the corporate media…

  65. Pauli C says:

    medical tyranny is strong in the land down under. Intellectual tyranny is not only alive and well within national security debate but anything to do with public health policy. The word freedom in this country is double speak for freedom to do what you are told….

  66. Pauli C says:

    corporate science is not science it is marketing. Any experiment is always determine by the bias of those carrying out the experiment. The scope of the research is always tailored to provide the results they want and they hide obscure or misrepresent anything that does not help them bring their product to market. Have a look at the institute for responsible technology if you want to get a glimpse of how a scientist with some integrity views what is going on these days…..Almost every day we hear reports of corruption within the industrial medical industry and research yet still we have hoards of trained monkeys that just gobble up their infotainment as though it is the word of God.

  67. Pauli C says:

    we finally see people that have struggle for decades with their integrity, ot wanting to rock the boat, anger the mighty corporations that feed them…but the veil of secrecy and corruption is cracking and people such as these are telling us the truth that many of us have been wide awake to for quite some time…..yet still the hoards of trained monkeys take the marketing and propaganda that is used to legitimise vaccines as the word of God…..how are we to break this manufactured consent…..how when they dont want to listen..

  68. Pauli C says:

    no matter how much corruption exists within the pharmaceutical industry the corporate media will always support them. 60000 deaths and hardly anyone knows yet we all know about terrorist attacks that kill hundreds….The pharmaceutical industry are one of the biggest terrorists on the planet.

  69. Judith says:

    Pauli – I have tried to post comments on SBS news after they parrot a very one sided pro vaccine article – despite a comments box they do not publish one comment. Same with all the mainstream news. We are a very oppressed society and it is no wonder people are turning to alternative internet sites and ditching mainstream news.

  70. Judith says:

    Health Consumers’ Council submission to The Senate Select
    Committee on Health has this to say. It is particularly relevant as it is admitted that only 2% of adverse reactions get reported. We have no real idea of how many adverse reactions there are to vaccines because it is purely voluntary. Drug companies have no liability but over 3 billion dollars have been paid out in American Courts for vaccine injury.

    “Transparency Reform 5 – Make adverse drug event reporting to the TGA for a specified range of serious reactions (suicidal ideation, strokes, psychosis, vaccine reactions etc.) mandatory and regularly publish full de- identified details on the TGA website.
    Voluntary reporting means that only a tiny fraction of adverse events ever get reported. A 2008 study by Curtin University pharmacologist Con Berbatis identified that for the prescription of all drugs by Australian General Practitioners only two percent of adverse events are reported.106 In 2013, the TGA reported that of the 14,500 adverse event reports it received, general practitioners (GPs) were responsible for only 5 per cent, down from 7 per cent in 2011.107 Currently, the Royal Australasian College of Physicians (RACP) acknowledge that nine per cent of healthcare practitioners reported adverse events to the TGA.108 Although these figures vary, they all indicate non-reporting of adverse events is the norm. Arguably clinicians who prescribe recklessly may be less likely to report serious adverse events than cautious prescribers as they may be concerned about the consequences of acknowledging their prescribing practices.”

    http://www.hconc.org.au/couch/uploads/file/hcc-senate-submission-on-pbs-tga-tranparency-reform-september-2014.pdf

  71. Judith says:

    Two Pediatricians who do not vaccinate and have little to no autism in their practice. Dr Eisenstein is sadly now deceased. However as the government refuses to do a vaccinated vs unvaccinated study – this is an excellent observational study.In Chicago, Homefirst Medical Services treats thousands of never- vaccinated children whose parents received exemptions through Illinois’ relatively permissive immunization policy. Homefirst’s medical director, Dr. Mayer Eisenstein, told us he is not aware of any cases of autism in never-vaccinated children; the national rate is 1 in 175, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “We have a fairly large practice,” Eisenstein told us. “We have about 30,000 or 35,000 children that we’ve taken care of over the years, and I don’t think we have a single case of autism in children delivered by us who never received vaccines. “We do have enough of a sample,” Eisenstein said. “The numbers are too large to not see it. We would absolutely know. We’re all family doctors. If I have a child with autism come in, there’s no communication. It’s frightening. You can’t touch them. It’s not something that anyone would miss.”
    Dr. Paul Thomas, M.D. is a board-certified fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics who resides in Oregon. . Dr. Paul stated that he does not give every vaccine to every child in his practice, and as a result, he has over 1000 children in his practice over the age of 3, and NONE of them have autism. The rest of the country is seeing a rate of about one out of 50 children on the autism spectrum. He states that the “science is not settled” linking too many vaccines to autism, and that doctors like himself should not be coerced by bills like this one proposed in Oregon to give up the right to informed consent in regards to vaccines.

  72. Richids Coulter says:

    The science is complete?
    Number of long-term studies comparing overall health outcomes between fully vaccinated and never vaccinated individuals – ZERO.
    Number of studies comparing rates of autism between the same two groups – ZERO.

  73. Richids Coulter says:

    Sorry but just saying something has been debunked doesn’t mean it actually has been.

  74. Richids Coulter says:

    It has not been “widely discredited” by scientific methods, it’s been discredited by industry-funded talking heads. Big difference.

  75. Richids Coulter says:

    Great quote, Horton should know…he lied under questioning at Wakefield’s GMC trial – evidence shows he knew about Wakefield’s potential conflict of interests via letters dated as far back as 1997.

  76. Absolutely agree whole heartedly. These host are idiot sheep who obviously have no mind of their own.

  77. Thankyou Thankyou Thankyou Michael for being the amazing man that you are. To have someone stand up and support us minority who really believe we are doing the right thing is highly admirable. To be subject to the venom and nastiness of those who are pro vaccination on our behalf is so kind. My heart ached for you as I heard these hosts blindly argue against you. I am sure they are following what they are told and have NOT done their own research and yet they seem so certain about what they are saying. If more people tuned back into their instinct, maternal or otherwise, our world would be a better place all around. Thankyou!

  78. Here Here. It is so good to read so many posts in align with what I believe. I commend Michael for creating a platform for us to safely connect. I feel so angry at these hosts, not a feeling I feel very often :(

  79. margaret jaeger says:

    You make strong and proven statements that in my years of studying this problem, 17 years, I found them to be True. I’d like to have your permission to cut copy paste the first long comment you made, it contains all the info I’d like to post but can’t seem to remember it all at the same time. Your posts are brilłiant, IMO, and so,far, Iagree

  80. sequence says:

    She was soooo unbearable! I almost hit my pure computer!

  81. sequence says:

    ?????????

  82. blindjustice says:

    I about choked on this one.

    Parents are entitled to be wary of the practice, he says, comparing it to the drug thalidomide: society
    once accepted the use of that drug, which caused mass birth defects in
    the 1950s and ’60s.

    Though, as Trioli points out, this was due to a cover-up by the pharmaceutical company which manufactured it.

    What? Are you kidding me? Trioli mentions a cover up by the Pharma company that manufactured it. Who the hell does she think is manufacturing vaccines. Why have they passed laws in the US to protect Pharma from lawsuits from deaths and disabilities caused by their vaccines?

    Merck is being sued by whistle blowers within their own agencies suing over the the efficacy of the rubella portion of the MMR. CDC whistle Blower William Thompson exposing the CDC’s cover up over the increased risk (over 300%) risk of autism from the MMR vaccine. Let there be no doubt that the media is complacent in protecting their $$$ interest they receive from their Pharma advertisers.

    If this were not so egregious it would be funny

  83. newbieinvestor says:

    “Proven science”? Not even close. Also, “science” is a useful tool, but one that is constantly subject to change as we get new data; half of so-called “scientific proof” is disproven, I believe, every seven (?) years. So it’s a crying shame that we keep forgetting this and reap the ill repercussions, regularly.

  84. Twylaa says:

    In the U.S. vaccine court, claimants don’t have a right to subpoena records. But in this Italian case, a lot was revealed about the pharma vaccine trials.

    Recent Italian Court Decisions on Vaccines and Autism
    http://www.ageofautism.com/2015/01/recent-italian-court-decisions-on-vaccines-and-autism.html

  85. Tia Severino says:

    I’m so sick of these dim-headed talking heads bringing up Dr Wakefield and saying he was debunked. That man had his career and reputation destroyed NOT because he was wrong in his findings – his work has been validated by several different independent studies – but because BIG PHARMA has to protect their bottom line and sell as many vaccines as possible. This is not about science! This is about money!!!!!!!!

  86. Tia Severino says:

    You’re an idiot. Tell that to the parents of Children who have died after getting vaccines “designed to protect”

  87. Tia Severino says:

    Dumbass she wasn’t talking to you. You provided nothing worth copying. She was talking to the intelligent person who responded to your stupid comment. And clearly you have never read the numerous studies that have been done that validate the link between vaccines and harm. Are you so blind to believe vaccines are SAFE and EFFECTIVE? If they were safe the manufacturers would not need special protection against litigation from people harmed by vaccines! Which they have! If they were effective you would have lifelong immunity and wouldn’t need booster shots! Go home and shut up. You have nothing meaningful to add to this conversation.

  88. Tia Severino says:

    http://io9.com/5853356/sick-of-pharmaceutical-ads-heres-why-they-wont-go-away

    Australia may have limits on drug ads, but apparently there’s no lack of misinformation floating around.

  89. Tia Severino says:

    So true!

  90. Kathy says:

    The italian court recently overturned their autism case, did you know that?
    http://www.skepticalraptor.com/skepticalraptorblog.php/italian-mmr-autism-decision-overturned/

  91. Tuatha de Danann says:

    Well it must be – if you take your child for a flu shot and they are disabled or killed by it.

  92. Tuatha de Danann says:

    I’m so tired of them bringing up Wakefield as if he was the only person that ever questioned the safety and effectiveness of vaccines.

  93. Tuatha de Danann says:

    Virginia thinks that only one drug in history was subject to industry obfuscation. Blessed are the ignorant.

    Virginia -“a concerted cover up about thalidomide for many years, such corporate malfeasance that its probably unparalleled in medical history”.

    News flash Virginia. Try reading Peter Gotszche’s ( Cochrane Collaboration) Deadly Medicine, Marcia Angell’s (NEJM) The Truth about the Drug Companies for a start.
    And then get back to me on how honest and altruistic the pharmaceutical companies are.

  94. Saoirse Laoch says:

    World leaders and politicians marched not so long ago in France after Charlie Hebdo in supposed solidarity of cartoonists to not be censored by political or religious correctness. But it appears that censoring by pharmaceutical correctness is to be upheld and protected.

  95. Ed Miller says:

    Irrelevant to Australian pharmaceutical advertising. Try to stay on topic.

  96. Twylaa says:

    And as if he has super-human powers for mass hypnosis.

  97. Twylaa says:

    Number of studies of vaccine injured children to determine susceptibility factors, mechanisms of injury, how to prevent, and how to treat these injuries? As far as I know, zero. All I have seen is a bit of number crunching and a declaration of “coincidence” or “not statistically significant” or “much better than the risk of the actual disease”.

  98. adam bonner says:

    Good on Mr Leunig. I love the fact that a person can be wrong and still express their point of view freely. I generally support vaccinations with the exception of Flu vaccines but I also strongly believe in freedom of speech and the right to choose whether one’s children are vaccinated. The modern Australian police state is doing untold harm to our vaccination success policy by introducing coercion into the tax and child care systems. As we now know this is already pushing some parents to develop their own alternatives – which I applaud. Like the war on drugs and the war on terrorists, attempts to legislate to compel people to vaccinate will only backfire. I think this is the true intention of people like Tony Abbott; not to increase vaccination rates but to increase dissent in the community so he can turn around and introduce even more draconian measures. Abbott and Co. have a track record of doing just this in a range of different areas. Not so you say. What a terrible accusation you say. Politicians wouldn’t stoop to such levels. I don’t agree. Abbott’s whole approach to the terrorism issue is about creating division and fear in order to justify far reaching intrusions into our civil liberties and the persecution of religious minorities. It is his stock in trade; his modus operandi.

  99. Ivan Jameson says:

    Poor barstards, thinking ‘Science’ (yes, in inverted commas) has any right to dictate how someone should live, or in this case inject into their blood.

  100. Pat N DeHat says:

    IT’S TIME TO LEGALIZE IT. MCRPA, is an act that we are trying to get to the people. If you want to help get it lagel, get involved, NOW.

  101. Richids Coulter says:

    Misdirection, the favorite tool of the vaccine apologist.